Ex-York-Adams coach, six District 3 players picked for Pennsylvania Big 33 football team

  • The 2020 Pennsylvania Big 33 football roster was released on Wednesday.
  • Former Bermudian Springs head coach Jon DeFoe was picked as an assistant coach.
  • Six players from District 3 made the 38-member Pennsylvania roster.
Jon DeFoe

Jon DeFoe recently resigned after 21 highly successful seasons as the Bermudian Springs’ head football coach.

DeFoe, however, still has one more high school football game to coach this year.

The longtime Eagles’ leader has been selected as an assistant coach for the 2020 Big 33 Football Classic.

The 63rd Big 33 contest is set for 2 p.m. Memorial Day, Monday, May 25, at Landis Field in the Central Dauphin School District. The game will pit Pennsylvania stars against Maryland stars. The coaches, players and cheerleaders for the game were announced Wednesday.

A former Big 33 player has appeared in each of the 54 NFL Super Bowls.

DeFoe's career: After the 2019 season, DeFoe announced he was putting his coaching career on pause for family reasons. During his stint with the Eagles, Bermudian reached the District 3 title game twice, won five York-Adams division titles and compiled a 152-78 overall record.

Bermudian Springs football coach Jon DeFoe puts career on pause to focus on family

Athens’ Jack Young is the Pennsylvania head coach. Harrisburg’s Calvin Everett is also an assistant on the Pennsylvania staff.

District 3 honorees: There weren’t any players from the York-Adams League selected for the 38-member Pennsylvania roster, but six District 3 players were picked. They are: Central Dauphin defensive back Nick Chimienti, Harrisburg wideout Kamere Day, Cocalico offensive lineman Brock Gingrich, Harrisburg defensive back Donte Kent, Cocalico defensive back Noah Palm and Central Dauphin offensive lineman Bryce Thoman.

In addition, Ricky Ortega, the son of former York High head coach Matt Ortega, was picked for the Pennsylvania team. Ortega is a quarterback for Coatesville who is headed to Villanova. Matt Ortega is the Coatesville head coach.

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Few Power Five recruits: Only two of the players on the Pennsylvania roster have committed to Power Five programs. (Bethlehem) Freedom offensive lineman Kaden Moore is going to Virginia Tech and (Pittsburgh) Central Catholic linebacker Gus Sunseri is headed to Pitt.

Virginia Tech and Pitt are both in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

The highest-rated 2020 recruit from the state on the Pennsylvania team is Moore, who is slotted at No. 20 according to the 247Sports composite rankings. York Suburban lineman Garth Barclay is rated No. 10 on that list and has signed with Syracuse in the ACC. He is not on the Pennsylvania Big 33 roster.

Many of the top recruits now enroll in their chosen colleges in January, making it impossible for them to compete in the Big 33 event. That includes Southern Columbia wideout Julian Fleming, the state’s No. 1 recruit, who has already enrolled at Ohio State.

Local athletes to cheer for Maryland: Additionally, 13 York County cheerleaders were picked for the squad which will cheer on the Maryland team. They are Dallastown’s Skye Conners, Megan Dubien and Maddie Heromin; Red Land’s Tylar Coulter, Georgia Halley, Sadie Knox, Olivia McElhenie and Paige Showers; Susquehannock’s Ava Jones; Northern York’s Delaney Keefer; Spring Grove’s Kayla Miller; Dover’s Kaitlyn Staub; and Central York’s Dajali Wilson.

The Big 33 event is sponsored by the Pennsylvania Scholastic Football Coaches Association, which took over the Big 33 program in 2017.

The PSFCA also runs the annual East-West All-Star Game, which will be held the day before the Big 33 contest. The East-West rosters are scheduled to be released next week.

Wire the honorary chair: The 2020 honorary chair for the Big 33 game is former NFL player Coy Wire, who is now an anchor and correspondent for CNN Sports.

He played nine years in the NFL as a defensive back and special teams performer. During his pro career, he received the Ed Block Courage Award, the Walter Payton Man of the Year Award and Special Teams Player of the Year Award.

Wire was a high school standout for nearby Cedar Cliff before playing college ball at Stanford.

For more information on the Big 33, visit www.big33.org. 

Reach Steve Heiser at sheiser@yorkdispatch.com.

Pennsylvania Big 33 Players

Tavion Banks, Bethlehem Catholic, Maine, 5-11, 195, RB.

Ali Barkley, Whitehall, Undecided, 6-1, 215, RB.

Kobe Brish, Schuylkill Haven, Undecided, 5-9, 205, LS.

Tui Brown, Gateway, UConn, 6-3, 210, LB.

Depree Bryant, Connellsville, Villanova, 5-9, 190, WR.

Josh Casilli, Peters Twp., Penn, 6-1, 175, WR.

Nick Chimienti, Central Dauphin, Stonybrook, 6-1, 180, DB.

Logan Danielson, Thomas Jefferson, IUP, 6-1, 265, DT.

Addison Darcy, State College, Navy, 6-3, 300, OL.

Kamere Day, Harrisburg, Undecided, 5-11, 175, WR.

Mac Duda, Thomas Jefferson, Princeton, 6-4, 280, OL.

Brock Gingrich, Cocalico, Delaware, 6-2, 290, OL.

Cole Graham, Hempfield Area, Saint Francis, 6-6, 270, DE.

Jake Green, North Schuylkill, Villanova, 6-1, 280, DT.

Anthony Harris, Nazareth, Maine, 6-3, 185, QB.

Liam Johnson, St. Joseph’s Prep, Penn, 6-1, 220, LB.

Donte Kent, Harrisburg, Central Michigan, 5-11, 175, DB.

Kevin Kurzinger, State College, Duquesne, 6-2, 235, DE.

William Leyland, Souderton, Temple, 6-1, 200, K.

Nathan Lusk, State College, Army, 6-3, 235, TE.

Matt McGeary, St. Joseph’s Prep, Colgate, 6-2, 310, OL.

Tyrell Mims, Martin Luther King, Villanova, 5-10, 170.

Jaxson Montross, Tunkhannock, Shippensburg, 6-1, 155, K.

Kaden Moore, (Bethlehem) Freedom, Virginia Tech, 6-3, 310, OL.

Ricky Ortega, Coatesville, Villanova, 5-11, 195, QB.

Noah Palm, Cocalico, New Hampshire, 6-1, 210, DB.

Naseer Penn, Baldwin, Maine, 6-1, 180, DB.

Michael Petrof, Ligonier Valley, Navy, 6-2, 275, DT.

Ryan Savagem, LaSalle College High, Princeton, 6-2, 230, DE.

Ian Sheehan, Neshaminy, Undecided, 6-1, 186, WR.

Patrick Shupp, Easton, Delaware, 6-3, 320, OL.

Aakeem Snell, Penn Hills, Lackawanna College, 6-2, 195, DB.

Jalen Stewart, Freedom, Undecided, 6-1, 225, RB.

Gus Sunseri, (Pittsburgh) Central Catholic, Pitt, 5-11, 190, LB.

Bryce Thoman, Central Dauphin, Temple, 6-5, 270, OL.

Dylan Walker, Pope John Paul II, Colorado State, 6-4, 225, TE.

Marques Watson-Tent, Blackhawk, Georgia Southern, 5-11, 195, LB.

Levi Wentz, Pine-Richland, Old Dominion, 6-3, 185, DB.

Pennsylvania Head Coach

Jack Young, Athens.

Pennsylvania Assistant Coaches

Jon DeFoe, Bermudian Springs; Pat Carey, North Hills; Martin Tobias, Penns Valley; Brian Herrick, Greenville; Calvin Everett, Harrisburg; John Donnelly, Central Bucks East; Jason Roeder, (Bethlehem) Freedom.