GREENFORD — For Crestview’s Anthony Cusick, the 43rd annual Penn-Ohio Stateline Classic provides one more opportunity to enjoy high school football. This is also the second star contest he has entered this summer.
Earlier this month, Cusick took part in the Jack Arvin Classic All-Star Game when he earned the honor of being named Mahoning/Columbia County MVP. A momentous honor to help cap off his successful high school football career.
“It meant a lot” Cusick said. “Mainly because it was my penultimate game. So now, with Penn-Ohio, I don’t expect anything like that at all, but it’s going to be fun.
Cusick led the Rebels to a 5-4 season last fall, setting school records for most passing yards in a season (1,836) and career (4,719).
The honor of MVP in the game Jack Arvin came as a surprise to Cusick. He didn’t expect such recognition because he thought the other Mahoning/Columbiana teammates were equally deserving.
“It was a lot of fun. I don’t really care about the score, but honestly, I was shocked. I didn’t expect to receive the MVP of this game”, Cusick said.
“Honestly, I thought Boardman’s (Anthony) Hightower should have received the award that night because he played really well. Both ways, attacking and defending. He definitely deserved MVP.
Cusick completed 21 of 31 passes in that game for 273 yards and two touchdowns as the Mahoning/Columbiana team trailed in a 31-21 loss. He also ran 10 times for 32 yards.
This game also gave him one last opportunity to play for his father as Paul Cusick was the head coach of the Mahoning County/Columbiana team. A special end-of-career experience.
Cusick played this whole Jack Arvin game at quarterback, but that won’t be the case in the Penn-Ohio contest with All-Ohio signalman Beau Brungard on the Ohio team. Cusick is looking to play catcher and defensive back for the Buckeyes. Despite perhaps the reduced role, participating in the game is something Cusick is no doubt looking forward to.
“This one is a great honour. It’s the same as the last game (Jack Arvin)”, He pointed out. “Representing Ohio is important. And representing my school, too.
Cusick is Crestview’s only representative after having the opportunity in the Jack Arvin game to adapt to his good friend and teammate Jack Yerkey. This will also be the last time Cusick wears his football uniform as he does not plan to play collegiately.
“I mean, that’s cool” he said. “It’s really really cool.”
The all-star team also allows Cusick to play with other Columbiana County players he’s faced across the line of scrimmage on Friday nights.
“Now I know them” Cusick said “I play with my old rivals now. I grew up with those kids playing (in the Ohio team) so now we can play with each other once.