TE Georges does it all for Wesley

DOVER — The importance of the moment was excruciatingly clear.

Trailing by seven points with only two minutes on the clock, the Wesley College football team had to score now.

But the Wolverines’ offense also had 94 yards sitting between it and the end zone on that September Saturday afternoon at North Central (Ill.).10dsn Wesley football-Kyle George

“I was just thinking about, ‘We’ve got to score, we’ve got to score,’” remembers tight end Kyle George. “It’s got to happen for us. We can’t lose.”

Never was Wesley so happy to have a 6-foot-4, 250-pound pass-catching tight end like George than at that moment.

The senior caught three passes for 41 yards as the Wolverines drove all 94 yards in 11 plays and then scored on a two-point conversion to shock North Central, 50-49, on Sept. 26.

As fourth-ranked Wesley (5-0 NJAC, 6-0) gets ready to host No. 21 Rowan (4-1 NJAC, 5-1) on Saturday at 1 p.m. in a New Jersey Athletic Conference showdown, coach Mike Drass said how impressed he was with George in that comeback victory.

He said George was dealing with a leg injury on the game-winning drive.

“A lot of people didn’t know,” said Drass. “He just kind of played through it. He barely could walk after the game. We had to go 94 yards and he covered 41 of them. He’s the guy that got us down there.

“That’s a 6-foot-4, 255-pound guy in the middle of the field. That’s a huge target.”

A former transfer from Rutgers, George is big enough and athletic enough that pro scouts are looking at him.

But he’s also reached that point in his career where it doesn’t matter if he has a ton of catches or not. George says he’s just as happy making some good blocks.

“I do anything they need me to do,” said George. “I try my best to get open, try to help with the blocking and try to make everybody on my team better.

“From the first day I came here, I’m definitely a better blocker. I’m more intense than I was before. I’m more prepared. I know the system more. It’s just natural when I’m doing certain things.”

In two-and-a-half seasons at Wesley, George has 94 catches for 1,387 yards with 12 touchdowns. A one-time defensive end prospect, George says he’d rather catch a TD pass than hit a quarterback.

He can’t complain about the way things have turned out for him since he decided to be a Wolverine.

“I don’t where I would have been if I hadn’t come here,” said George. “I’m definitely happy that I came here.”

“We got kind of lucky with Kyle,” said Drass. “That was a marriage made in heaven for us. Our offense has a lot of weapons and he’s a main one.”

Jersey boys

Brandon Bennett and Kyle George have known each other since they were in the sixth grade.

They were always playing football together — at Willingboro (N.J.) High, at Nassau (N.Y.) Community College and, for the last few years, at Wesley.

In college, the two have also been roommates, too.

Being the New Jersey natives they are, the two also have a special appreciation for playing Rowan this week. Rowan has long been considered the top Division III football program in the state.

A year ago, Wesley beat the Profs for the first time in eight tries.

“You get the upper hand,” said Bennett, a senior defensive end. “When I go back home I get to talk more. We definitely have to play a good game.”

“This game is always high intensity,” said George. “I kind of know some people on the team and I’m from that area so it makes it more exciting. I know it’s going to be a good game.”

Unlike George, Bennett has had only limited success on the field at Wesley. Last year, Drass moved the 6-foot-4, 242-pounder to linebacker but he could tell Bennett wasn’t comfortable there.

Drass said he’s seen a big change in Bennett now that he’s back at defensive end this season.

“I remember, we had a meeting in the spring and I just said, ‘I want to see him happy,’” said Drass. “I remember him just being miserable. He’s come back with a great energy. He’s just played great football.

“I’m just happy to see him on the field, making plays and being a big part of the defense.”

Tough enough

With 100 career touchdown passes, Joe Callahan’s next one will move him past Chris Warrick into first place on Wesley’s all-time list.

The senior quarterback is averaging over four TD passes per game this season.

But it’s worth noting that, when Callahan reached 100 in last week’s 56-14 win over Kean, he also threw a couple blocks on running plays and caught an eight-yard pass on a receiver screen.

“He laid somebody out, too,” said George. “When you see your quarterback do stuff like that, it makes the game way more exciting.

“Joe’s tough. He lifts weights, he’s strong, he’s fast. You just see his talent displayed when he does stuff like that.”

Drass, of course, would rather not see his star QB throwing blocks. He blames former Wesley quarterback Shane McSweeny for instilling that mentality in Callahan.

The two hang out in the offseason.

“I can’t change how he plays,” said Drass. “McSweeny got in his ear and said he’s got to go full bore at everything. And that’s what he does.”

Sports editor Andy Walter can be reached at 741-8227 or walter@newszap.com.

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