93.7 The Fan High School Football Preview 2016 Class 6A: Pine-Richland

Pine-Richland
Northern Seven Conference

Eric Kasperowicz arrived as the head coach of the Rams in 2013 and he quickly established them as a powerhouse as they have won 30 games and a WPIAL Class AAAA championship in just three seasons.

Last year the Rams finished 10-2 and lost in the semifinals to Penn-Trafford but in the process one of the WPIAL’s brightest stars emerged in quarterback Phil Jurkovec.

At 6-foot-5, 200 pounds, Jurkovec has the frame and skill set to become the next great quarterback to come out of Western Pennsylvania.

Only a junior, Jurkovec is ranked as one of the top 10 quarterbacks in the country by most of the major scouting services, and in Kasperowicz’s spread offense he should have another huge year.

Last season Jurkovec, who made a verbal commitment to Notre Dame in May, completed 176 of 264 passes for 2,560 yards and 20 touchdowns and he rushed for 1,250 more yards.

That was his first year as a starter and now he has a year under his belt meaning he should be even better and have a better command of the offense.

And he also added a big-time weapon in 6-foot-7 tight end, Grant Carrigan, who moved into the district from West Virginia. Carrigan is the son of former Pitt basketball player Rich Carrigan and has offers from Pitt and Wake Forest.

That combination is a scary thought for the Rams opponents but what’s even scarier is that they had a relatively young team and have the bulk of their defense back as well.

Pine-Richland allowed 14 points or less in eight of its 12 games last season and should be even stingier this year.

The Rams will open the season in grand fashion – with a road trip to perennial national powerhouse St. Edward (Ohio) High School (near Cleveland) in a game that will be televised on ESPN.

After that they will again battle North Allegheny and Central Catholic for the Northern Seven title and those three will also be the best teams in 6-A so a second trip to Heinz Field in three seasons is not out of the question for the Rams.

2016 Schedule
AUGUST
Sat. 8/27 @ St. Edward, L 28-27

SEPTEMBER
Fri. 9/2 @ mt. Lebanon 7:30p
Fri. 9/9 vs Seneca Valley 7:30p
Fri. 9/16 @ Penn Hills 7:30p
Fri. 9/23 vs Bethel Park 7:30p
Fri. 9/30 @ Central Catholic 7:30p

OCTOBER
Fri. 10/7 @ Peters Township 7:30p
Fri. 10/14 vs Shaler Area 7:30p
Fri. 10/21 @ Butler 7:30p
Fri. 10/28 vs North Allegheny 7:30p

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