When retired Middlebury College head football coach Mickey Heinecken and the Vermont Chapter of the National Football Foundation launched the North-South Senior Football game, it was the beginning of a November tradition.
It continues on Saturday at Castleton University’s Dave Wolk Stadium when the ball goes in the air at 12:30 p.m.
The nearly two-decade history of this high school all-star game has been a wild ride including the 2010 game when 122 points were scored.
“I feel confident in saying that the 122 points scored in that game remains the highest of all the major all-star game,” Minnesota high school football historian Dave Giles said a couple of years ago.
That game prompted the famous quote from area broadcaster Jack Healey: “I like offense but it’s like ice cream. You can have too much of it.”
This year South head coach Jim Hill will try to get his offense clicking through the air and on the ground with units designed to move the ball in each fashion.
Hill will go with two different offensive units which is the norm in this game. The twist is that one offensive group will be designed to strike through the air and the other to move the ball overland.
Bellows Falls quarterback Jon Terry will be the general for the run-oriented attack. He will have his own tailback Jed Lober with him as well as BF teammate Jeb Monier as the wing back.
Mount Anthony’s Hayden Gaudette will be the fullback for Terry’s unit.
The aerial attack’s QB will be Rutland’s Trey Davine. He will have his own favorite receiver Slade Postemski as one of his weapons as well as Mount Anthony receiver Austin Grogan. Otter Valley’s Dylan Stevens-Clark will be another receiver at Davine’s disposal.
Tailback Ben Gilbert of Windsor will be Davine’s tailback.
Hill also tailored his lines for pass blocking and run blocking.
The South team began practicing this week on Sunday at Rutland High’s Alumni Field.
“The first day was a little slow. It was getting to know everybody,” Hill said.
The North team is practicing at South Burlington High School.
There was no North-South Game in Vermont in 2020. Like the Shrine Maple Suagr Bowl, the all-star game between Vermont and New Hampshire, it was a casualty of COVID.
It’s great to have it back.
The South roster: Patrick Barbour, Harrison Gleim, Jed Lober, Jeb Monier, Jon Terry, Bellows Falls; Calvin Gould, Tyler McNary, Aaron Petrie, Brattleboro; Will Addington, David Keyes, Warren McIntyre, Burr and Burton
Josh Williams, Luke Williams, Fair Haven; Harry Gaudet, Brandon Potter, Tarin Prior, Jacob Seaver, Devon Sinclair, Colin Vielleux, Hartford; Nick Austin-Neil, Nikolai Luksch, Matt Kiernan, Sam Warren, Middlebury; Connor Lopiccolo of Mill River
Kaleb Carpenter, Hayden Gaudette, Andrew Gilbert, Austin Grogan, Danyal Khan, Mount Anthony; Brady Diaz, Dylan Stevens-Clark of Otter Valley; Greg Tilton, Oxbow; Colby Hutchins, Poultney
Jack Coughlin, Trey Davine, Ben Parker, Slade Postemski, Rutland; Sam Presch, Caleb Roby, Springfield; Dalton Clifford, Austin Gauld, Ben Gilbert, Windsor; Robbie Macri, Corey White, Woodstock.
The North roster: Nick Bidwell, Ryan Goodman, Brody Hamel, Kenny Salls, BFA Fairfax-Lamoille; Justin Brown, Cole Montague, Dakota Wry, BFA St. Albans; Taylen Bennett, Cam Benoit, Amari Fraser, Burlington-South Burlington; Jared Anderson, Ryan Canty, Angelos Carroll, Haden Hilgerdt, Henry Kramer, Ryan Walker, Champlain Valley
Alex Rublee, Ben Knapp, Colchester; Sebastian Coppolla, Kam Cyr, Oliver Orvis, Walker Root, Ben Serrantanio, Essex; Trevor Lussier, Victor Richardy, Lyndon; Chaz Larivee and Colin Mathis, Milton
Harley Vorse, Missisquoi Valley; Adam Mansfield, Carmelo Miceli, Ryan Stoddard, Mount Abraham; Gabe Baron, Carson Holloway, Mount Mansfield; Garrett Heath, North Country Maxime Makuza, Kadin McConinck, Rice Memorial; Colton Perkins, Andrew Trottier, Spaulding; Sam Begin, Anthony Briggs, Karson Clark, Jacob Silver, St. Johnsbury; Henry Beling, Cameron Comstock, Charles Haynes, Union-32.