Southeastern Pennsylvania's top interior defensive linemen

Paul Johnson wreaks havoc along the line for St. Joe's Prep. RICK O'BRIEN / Staff
Paul Johnson wreaks havoc along the line for St. Joe's Prep. RICK O'BRIEN / Staff
Posted: November 12, 2012

Moving on with our tour of the local football talent, this week we rank the top 10 interior defensive linemen (tackles and guards) in the area.

The list does not include players who already have been mentioned as being among Southeastern Pennsylvania's best offensive linemen. Penn Charter's Mike McGlinchey, a two-way standout, is an example.

1. Paul Johnson, St. Joseph's Prep, senior, 6 feet, 290 pounds. The first-team all-Catholic League Class AAAA performer might be too small to play at the Division I-A or I-AA level, but no one creates more havoc along the line.

Led by Johnson, also an elite heavyweight wrestler, the Hawks had allowed only two rushing touchdowns before Saturday's league final against La Salle.

2. Tyrone Barge, Imhotep Charter, Jr., 6-2, 265. A solid run-stuffer for the Public League Class AA champs, Barge has drawn the interest of Boston College, Connecticut, and Rutgers.

3. Rick Young, Souderton, Jr., 6-2, 295. The rugged middle guard likely will be tabbed again as a first-team all-Suburban One League Continental Conference choice.

4. Elijah Griffin, Downingtown East, Sr., 6-3, 265. Joined up front by Josh Ganzelli, the Coastal Carolina recruit did a nice job of clogging the middle.

5. Tom Spiteri, La Salle, Sr., 6-2, 285. Spiteri, also a force at offensive guard, earned first-team all-Catholic Class AAAA honors on defense.

6. Derek Brandt, North Penn, Sr., 5-11, 235. It was a subpar showing for the Knights, but Brandt continued to impress on both sides of the ball.

7. Jake Cooper, Archbishop Wood, So., 6-2, 225. The quick and aggressive Cooper gets overshadowed by fellow Vikings linemen Fran Walsh and Tyler Smith.

8. Dezhaunte White, Samuel Fels, Sr., 6-1, 245. With a strong nose for the ball, White has helped the Panthers win two of their last three games.

9. Mark Caputo, Unionville, Jr., 6-2, 285. Following in the footsteps of his brother Steve, who was an offensive lineman at Temple, Caputo is a stalwart in a 4-4 alignment.

10. Mike Supp, Pennridge, Sr., 6-5, 210. With the aid of Supp, the Rams easily downed Abington, 35-14, in the first round of the PIAA District 1 Class AAAA playoffs.

Twenty others to watch, listed alphabetically: Jake Clark, Abington, Jr., 5-10, 255; Rich Coia, Ridley, Sr., 5-6, 180; Zaire Hollerway, George Washington, Jr., 6-0, 270; Phil Ianozi, Springfield (Montco), Sr., 6-0, 215; Luke Johnson, Pennsbury, Sr., 6-0, 220; Kadar Jones, Frankford, Jr, 6-2, 305; J. Kraiza, Cardinal O'Hara, Jr., 6-2, 250; Jake Lindauer, W.C. Rustin, Jr., 5-10, 215; David Losier, La Salle, Sr., 6-0, 255; Vince Marra, Springfield (Delco), Sr., 6-1, 215; Khari McCloud, Academy Park, Sr., 6-1, 240; Dylan Morgan, Coatesville, Sr., 6-1, 250; Dan Pedersen, Lansdale Catholic, Sr., 5-11, 205; Anthony Pond, Pottsgrove, Jr., 5-10, 180; Cory Radkins, Central Bucks West, Sr., 5-10, 260; Mason Romano, Spring-Ford, Jr., 6-0, 210; Joe Ruskowski, Archbishop Ryan, Sr., 6-1, 220; Tre Scott, Plymouth Whitemarsh, Sr., 6-0, 260; Joe Smith, Bonner-Prendergast, Sr., 6-1, 255; Dan Speca, Downingtown West, Sr., 6-0, 230.

Rick O'Brien: The Inquirer TOP 10


Team Record

Last week's rankings in parentheses.

1. La Salle (3) 10-1

2. St. Joseph's Prep (1) 9-1

3. Pennridge (4) 10-1

4. C.B. South (7) 10-1

5. Coatesville (5) 9-2

6. Archbishop Wood (8) 9-2

7. Ridley (6) 11-0

8. Downingtown E. (2) 10-1

9. Imhotep Charter (9) 11-0

10. Pennsbury (10) 9-2

Under consideration (listed alphabetically): Episcopal Academy (10-0), Frankford (8-2), Pottsgrove (11-0), Spring-Ford (10-1), West Catholic (7-3), West Chester Henderson (8-3).

- Rick O'Brien

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