Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Paladins Will Face Difficult QB Challenge

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Paladins Will Face Difficult QB Challenge

Article excerpt

JERSEY CITY -- The most sought-after quarterback from Bergen County doesn't play for Bergen Catholic, Don Bosco, Paramus Catholic or St. Joseph.

Coaches and players for each of Bergen County's four parochial powers know all about Brandon Wimbush, though. The strong-armed junior from Teaneck played his best game this season in St. Peter's Prep's victory over Bergen Catholic two months ago, performed well in a loss to St. Joseph two weeks later and will try to lead the second-seeded Marauders to an upset of top-seeded Paramus Catholic on Friday night at MetLife Stadium.

Containing Rutgers-bound senior tailback Jonathan Hilliman, who has rushed for 1,899 yards and 30 touchdowns, and Wimbush will be Paramus Catholic's most daunting tasks.

The 6-foot-2, 210-pound Wimbush, a first-year starter for the Marauders (10-1), has completed 59 percent of his passes for 1,477 yards, 16 touchdowns and four interceptions. He also has rushed for 538 yards and seven touchdowns on 44 carries, a 12.2-yard average.

"I've had a lot of great quarterbacks here who did great things," St. Peter's coach Rich Hansen said. "But we've never had a kid with arm strength like this. It's just exceptional. He's always had a great arm. It's just been about mechanics and getting him to understand the game. He has done those things. I've just been really happy with his performance."

Hansen has plenty of company.

Coaches from nine Division I-A schools, most notably Ohio State, have offered Wimbush scholarships, despite him starting just 11 games at the varsity level. He also has offers from Boston College, Connecticut, Maryland, Miami, Penn State, Rutgers, Temple and Vanderbilt, and coaches from Northwestern, Stanford and Virginia visited practice this week.

Wimbush's commute isn't exactly easy.

He wakes up at 5:15 a.m. most days to arrive at St. Peter's in time for 8:10 classes, usually by train. …

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