2014 Sharpsville Football Preview

2014 Sharpsville Blue Devils’ Football Preview
2013 Record: 8-5 (3-3), Region 1
Head Coach: Paul Piccirilli, 19th season (162-55)
Class: A
Last District 10 Title: 2012
PIAA Playoff Record Since 2000: 3-5
District Playoff Record Since 2000: 20-6
5-Year Winning Percentage: 80.0%

2014 Schedule
Aug. 30 – at Otto-Eldred, 1:30
Sept. 6 – at Erie East, 2
Sept. 12 – Reynolds, 7
Sept. 19 – at Mercer, 7
Sept. 26 – at West Middlesex, 7
Oct. 3 – Lakeview, 7
Oct. 10 – Eisenhower, 7
Oct. 17 – Farrell, 7
Oct. 24 – at Wilmington, 7
Oct. 31 – at Greenville, 7:30

Year in Review: During the regular season, the Blue Devils scored just an average of 11.8 points versus teams who finished with the winning record. In the playoffs, Sharpsville outscored their first two opponents by a combined score of 71-10. In the district title game, the Devils dropped a 27-0 decision to Lakeview as their two-year run as district champs ended. The Blue Devils have appeared in four of the last five district championship tilts. Only Hickory and Erie Cathedral Prep can say that in District 10.

Last season, the Blue Devils saw a decrease in the amount of points which were scored from 32.2 in 2012 to 20.6 in 2013. That 11.6 reduction was the most since 2006 (34.6 to 22.2) when the Devils saw a 12.4 drop.

Sharpsville opens their schedule with back-to-back games on the road (against Otto-Eldred and Erie East). The Blue Devils open their home schedule against Reynolds on September 12.

2013 Team Leaders
Points Scored Per Game: 20.6 (42nd in Area)
Points Allowed Per Game: 10.7 (2nd in Area)

3 Things to Watch at Sharpsville
Defense stands tall.
Major turnover happens in high school football on a yearly basis. Those teams who can withstand graduation can put together a nice run. In Sharpsville’s case, Paul Piccirilli has continuously proved that to be the case as his Blue Devils have defied the odds. You can look at their high powered offense as a key but the defense has been especially stingy. Just over the last four years, Sharpsville has been in the top 5 each season in points allowed in the area. In the last ten years, they’ve only allowed their opponents to average 20 points or more twice (2007 & 2008).

Commitment to Excellence.
The Blue Devils are one of only two schools in the area to post four double-digit win seasons in four of the last five years (Crestview). Sharpsville is also one of just seven local schools to have posted six winning seasons in a row. Sharpsville has the third highest winning percentage (80.0%) of any area team over the last five years (Western Reserve & Crestview).

Run the football.
The Blue Devils return senior George Keck in their backfield along with Tyler Wansack and Tyrin Peavy, a junior. Peavy has homerun hitting skills as he returned a pair of kickoffs for a touchdown last season. Senior Greg Popatak is back in the fold after an impressive junior campaign. Luke Henwood finished the season as the team’s starting quarterback as only a freshman.

Fact Finder: Sharpsville has opened their season with a win five straight years…Before last year’s 2-2 mark in September, the Blue Devils has won 19 consecutive games in the ninth month on the calendar.

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