My 2023 football season in review

Tagged under: Beyond The Keystone, News

David Burnworth | December 24, 2023

The year started out with two games at Rocco Ortenzio Stadium (Bishop McDevitt High School) in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, marking my first time catching a game there but my second time seeing these all-star games. My next two all-star games would take me to West Virginia and then to Kentucky. The game in Kentucky was the first time I made the drive to catch the Northern Kentucky All-Star. The game was a 20-14 final, making for an exciting trip. I would end up seeing twelve total all-star games in four different states.

The next two games would be grid games in Kentucky at my favorite school in the state home stadium. The Lawrence County Bulldogs. The highlight of this trip was meeting and having a nice, long conversation with Bulldogs head coach Alan Short. To my surprise, Coach Short had Lawrence County sent up to the stands for me.

The final all-star game was again in Bradford, Pennsylvania, a 675.1-mile round trip from Columbus, Ohio. Pennsylvania would win a tight game with New York. To me, the odd thing about this game is how New York can have players from Southwestern High School, which is located in Jamestown, but zero players from Jamestown High School.

My regular season started as usual on a Thursday night in Wynford, Ohio, which was my first time there and my first time seeing both schools play (Gallion and Wynfrod). I was able to get a feature picture with two of the big linemen who battle each other in this game. The article and picture can be found here on in the Beyond the Keyston Section.

The next four games would be part of a weekend in Kentucky. This trip would bring me four new teams and a new location. In Kentucky, early in the season, they hold what they call bowl games, which can give you two or more games each night at the same location.

Game 21 was big for me for a couple of different reasons. First, it took me to Eaton, Ohio, a place that had been on my hit list since I found out that it was one of the best small school stadiums in Western Ohio. Second, it would allow me to see Richmond (India) for the first time. I have been able to secure a press pass for the Indiana State football teams. I try to play some games in the state or cover their teams if they play here in Ohio.

My next week will take me back to Pike County, Kentucky, to cover the Pike County Bowl. Again, this is a place that I have covered for multiple years, starting in the late 90’s, and you have to get a special media pass to do so. The Johnson Central game at Pikeville ended 21-14 and would be the best game of the year for me.

Jump up to game 31. I would finally catch Brownsville Area, Pa., play for the first time. They would drop a 40-6 decision to Buckeye Local, an Ohio school.

My season would end once again in Texas, where I was able to get a media pass that allowed me to be in the press box and/or on the field. I played eleven of the twelve games in the press box, as I prefer it to being down on the field. But as a lifetime Dallas Cowboy fan, I had to go on the field where I had a picture of me taken with me standing on the star.

My final stats for the season are as follows:.

104 games, with 103 being high school games, where I watched the entire game from start to finish. My one non-high school game was a club college game between Ohio State and Wright State. One of the coaches from Wright State had seen some of my coverage of games and asked me to cover their game.

Yearly Total Miles: 14,244.80 Yearly Total Price: 2,109.28

Breakdown by States
Ohio 44
Iowa 14
Kentucky 12
Texas 12
Indiana 9
Penn 8
West Virginia 4
New York 1




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