The Ohio High School Athletic Association will be holding the 2022 football state championships this week at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton.
We are going to preview each state championship game this week. We started with Division II, Division V and Division III. Now we move on to Division I.
Division I state championship game
Date/Time: Friday, December 2 at 7:30 p.m.
St. Edward (14-1) vs Springfield (13-1)
The only rematch in a state championship game from last season, as St. Edward defeated Springfield 23-13 a year ago for the Division I crown.
To get here, St. Edward took care of Gahanna Lincoln 31-7 in the state semifinals while Springfield knocked off Archbishop Moeller 28-24.
Both teams come back to the state championship game with a different starting quarterback from last season, as St. Edward's Christian Ramos and Springfield's Te'Sean Smoot have graduated.
For the defending state champions, Casey Bullock has stepped up in the quarterback role and has thrown for 1,770 yards and 25 touchdowns while adding almost 1,000 yards and seven scores on the ground.
Gone also for the Eagles is running back Danny Enovitch, replaced by Marvin Bell, Jr. He has 1,707 yards and 25 touchdown on the ground and also scored a receiving touchdown. Joshua Gribble has added nearly 500 more yard on the ground for the Eagles.
Kyan Mason has been the top receiver for St. Edward with 43 catches for 634 yards and seven touchdowns and he has also returned a kickoff for a touchdown.
Defensively, the Eagles have allowed just 10.3 points per game and have only given up 20 total points in five playoff games with a pair of shutouts. The defense is led by Northwestern commit Michael Kilbane, who has 144 tackles and 16.5 sacks and Coastal Carolina commit Wyatt Gedeon with 121 tackles and 16 sacks.
Springfield, meanwhile, has turned to Bryce Schondelmyer to run the offense. The Division VI Offensive Player of the Year at Arcanum, Schondelmyer hasn't missed a beat in transferring to the defending Division I runners-up.
He has completed 69.4% of his passes for 4,424 yards and 47 touchdowns and was named the co-Athlete of the Year in the Greater Western Ohio Conference.
Wide receiver Anthony Brown leads the team with 1,543 yards and 20 touchdowns. The University of Kentucky commit has made 75 catches this season. Daylen Bradley leads the Wildcats with 90 catches and has 1,300 yards and 12 touchdowns. Da'Shawn Martin and Shawn Thigpen have caught seven touchdown passes each.
Jaivian Norman - who was the other player named co-Athlete of the Year in the SWOC - leads the Springfield defense with 124 tackles and 20 tackles for loss. Jackson Heims has 102 tackles with 6.5 sacks and 11.5 tackles for loss and Robert Owens, Jr. has 80 tackles and a team-high seven sacks with 17 tackles for loss.
Aaron Scott leads the secondary with five interceptions.
St. Edward is looking for its sixth state championship, while Springfield is looking for its first. This season was the fourth state semifinal appearance in a row for the Wildcats, with 2019 their first ever state semifinal.