By: Wes McKinney
MCMECHEN, W.Va. — A season ago, Bishop Donahue quarterback Jesse Padlow led the state in passing with 2,468 yards, despite missing two games for the Bishops. He also collected 24 touchdowns on the year as well.
“His mental game is his strength,” Bishop Donahue coach John Durdines said. “He does a great job of evaluating the defense, both pre and post snap – that’s a key. He knows where the openings will be on the field.”
Padlow, a rising senior and first team all-state selection, led the Bishops to a 7-3 regular season record a season ago. His team went on to defeat No. 5 Man in the first round of the playoffs before eventually falling to Williamstown in the quarterfinals.
“He’s the type of kid that doesn’t care if he has to hand the ball off 50 times a game as long as we win,” Durdines said. “The kids feed off that, they know he’s out there to win first. He will audible to run plays and audible to pass plays, based on what he sees and the situation.”
Entering his senior season, Padlow has received attention from Division II schools.
Even with the loss of first team all-state receiver Lavonte Hampton, the 6-foot-1, 160-pound signal caller has three of his top targets back this year in Cole Berletch, Josh Miller and Brett Moore.
The Bishops also return a wealth of experience on the defensive side of the ball as well. C.J. Huff, an all-state honorable mention selection, looks to build off his 13-sack performance from a season ago.
“He’s another kid that wanted to step his game up,” Durdines said. “He knows he’s the man on the defensive line now. He’s taken a lot of the younger kids under his wing. He gives a lot of credit to (first team all-state selection) Chris Vani for his development as far as how to read certain situations.”
Another leader on defense for the Bishops is linebacker Matt Vucelik.
“He’s my quarterback on the defense,” Durdines said. “He’s the one that recognizes plays and calls out defensive plays to everyone else on the team.”
Durdines has built Bishop Donahue into a perennial playoff contender as the Bishops have put together five consecutive winning seasons.
“The kids are buying into our coaching,” Durdines said “They get all the credit because they are the ones out there busting their butts. They are very coachable kids. Over the past seven or eight years, our expectations have been the same — getting to the playoffs and advancing.”
Bishop Donahue has qualified for the playoffs in three of the last four years.
“We advanced one round each time, but lost in the next round,“ Durdines said. “I think this team is hungrier to go further. They are really pushing each other. They know we can be good.”
2014 Football Schedule
|2||09/05/14 07:30PM||A||RIVER , OH H.S.||–|
|4||09/20/14 07:00PM||H||NOTRE DAME||–|
|5||10/04/14 01:30PM||A||CONOTTON VALLEY,OH H.S.||–|
|7||10/17/14 07:30PM||A||PADEN CITY||–|
|8||10/24/14 07:30PM||A||BEALLSVILLE, OH H.S.||–|
|9||10/31/14 07:00PM||H||WHEELING CENTRAL CATHOLIC||–|
|10||11/08/14 01:30PM||A||RIVER VIEW||–|
|wins: 0 lost: 0 ties: 0|
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