Youngstown Cardinal Mooney star defensive lineman John Simon has had another great season. Simon is…
Notebook: Cardinal Mooney-Steubenville
Youngstown Cardinal Mooney-Steubenville Notebook Youngstown Cardinal Mooney beat Steubenville 35-20 Saturday night in a game that wasn't as close as the score might indicate. While the game didn't live up to the advance billing, some individual performers did. Bill Greene was on hand and has this report. Most Ohio high school football fans have looked forward to the possible meeting between Youngstown Cardinal Mooney and Steubenville for over a year. Unfortunately, the game didn't quite live up to all the hype, with Mooney winning handily 35-20. Early in the game, Steubenville looked like the proverbial "deer in the headlights." Youngstown Cardinal Mooney was an 18-wheeler going 75 MPH. Mooney led 28-0 at halftime, stretched it to 35-0 early in the third quarter, before Steubenville mounted a rally. Mooney star junior defensive lineman Johnny Simon was his usual dominating self. Simon personally eliminated the running game and put constant pressure on Steubenville quarterback Dwight Macon. Simon, probably the top junior prospect in the state, has offers from Notre Dame and Ohio State as well as many others. Maybe the most impressive play of the night was Simon as a lead blocker on a punt return. It's hard to imagine a 275 pound lineman being out ahead of a punt returner and having the agility to be an effective blocker, but Simon isn't like any defensive lineman. Simon's combination of size, quickness and a strong motor make him a top national recruit. In my opinion, John Simon is the top prospect in Ohio, regardless of class. Penn State recruit Brandon Beachum led Mooney by rushing for 245 yards and playing great at his linebacker spot. I've always been undecided about what side of the ball Beachum will play at the next level, but after seeing him get 35 carries I feel he will be a tailback, and a good one, for Joe Paterno. Beachum showed great vision and had the speed to break a couple long runs. He was just as strong at the end of the game, so his conditioning is excellent. Mike Zordich Another Penn State commit, Michael Zordich, was equally impressive. I've seen Zordich play at least 6 times now, and I've come to the conclusion that he just doesn't ever play a bad game. Zordich might be the hardest hitting player in Ohio. He is a "knock-down" tackler, not a "drag-down" tackler. He is a great leader and is a player that makes big plays when the opponent gets in the Mooney red zone. Zordich causes turnovers and that might be his greatest asset. Zordich should have a great career at Penn State, following the footsteps of his father, Mike Sr. Taylor Hill is headed to Oklahoma and I expect to see this Mooney standout play outside linebacker for the Sooners. Hill is a pass rushing specialist and can defend the run. Offensively, Hill does a great job blocking for the Mooney ball carriers. Hill is an unselfish player who quietly has put up great numbers at Mooney. Hill had consecutive sacks in the fourth quarter eliminating any chance of a Steubenville comeback. Timmy Marlowe stepped in for an injured Danny McCarthy and quarterbacked Mooney to the easy win. Marlowe has blinding speed and that was evident on a long punt return for a touchdown. Marlowe doesn't have ideal size to play in college, but he has speed to burn. He was excellent against Steubenville. Mooney star Dan McCarthy won't play again this year because of a ruptured disc in his neck, but he said will be ready to go full-contact in six months. No surgery will be needed and McCarthy will be headed to Notre Dame to join his brother, Kyle. Prior to his injury McCarthy was having a great season and is the front-runner for the prestigious Mr. Football award. McCarthy said he hopes to play as a true freshman at Notre Dame and said he has no reservations about committing to play for Charlie Weis and the Fighting Irish, despite their poor showing in 2007. Steubenville sophomore quarterback Dwight Macon was very good in the second half, after experiencing some early turnover problems. Macon, who bears a strong resemblance to former Buckeye Troy Smith, bounced back to lead Big Red to three second half scoring drives. Macon has a chance to be a high Division-I prospect by the time he leaves Steubenville. He has a great arm, good speed and excellent field awareness for a sophomore. If he continues to improve, he will be a heavily recruited football player in the coming years. I was very impressed with the potential of Macon.
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