SALEM, Ohio (WKBN) – When the 42nd Penn-Ohio Stateline Classic All-Star Football Game kicks off on Thursday, June 24, it will mark a special opportunity for a coach and his son.
United’s D.J. Ogilvie will be coaching his first career All-Star game. A somewhat surprising fact considering his very successful career at United, Boardman and Lemon Bay in Florida. But more importantly, he will get to watch his son Brutus play one last high school football game from the sidelines.
“This going to be fun to represent our Quad County [Coaches Association]. I have been asked to coach All-Star games before, but I never wanted to take the time away from my family or my own team. But with Brutus here, it is well worth it,” D.J. said.
“It’s one of those things that he missed the year before due to an injury, his junior season. So this is a great opportunity for him to take one game back, especially since it’s not a regular-season game where he would be uptight and more focused on scouting, game-planning while here, it’s more of a fun type thing. The pressure is off,” D.J. added as he reflected on his son having a special opportunity to participate in the game.
“It’s special, you know, to have one more time to go there and play,” Brutus said. “With COVID and everything, I didn’t know if we would even have a season, let alone make it to the playoffs and all, so I’m just glad to be here.”
“My dad was a coach and I grew up in a locker room, and he has been with me since pre-school, to every game, bus rides, practices. So I knew what that was like as a kid and having Brutus on the sideline one more time like this is going to be fun,” D.J. said.
With Coach Ogilvie coaching his son, you would expect him to utilize the offensive system that the Eagles had record-breaking success with this past season. But Ogilvie saw an even bigger opportunity for his son and the Ohio team.
“That was the plan originally. We’ll run what we do,” D.J. said. “But Coach [Mark] Brungard’s son [Brady] is a senior on the team and I thought what a great opportunity to have a great coach to coach his son too. So I asked Coach Brungard if he would like to call the offense. So he is running the offense and I think it is great for Brutus to learn from someone else — a division one quarterback and a state championship game coach in Coach Brungard.”
Brutus, who threw for 2,801 yards and 28 touchdowns during the 2021 season, will have a familiar player to throw to in the game. His teammate and favorite target Keaton Baker will line up at receiver for the Buckeyes. Baker had 86 receptions for 1,367 yards and 13 touchdowns for the Eagles last season.
“It’s going to be fun. We’re both going to college and playing against each other, so it’s going to be fun being able to play together one more time,” Brutus said.
Brutus is going to Geneva while Baker plans to attend Thiel College.
“One last special game together, so we will see if we can make the most of it,” Baker said. “He’s going to Geneva and I’m going to Thiel so we will be in the same league and will be playing against each other.”
The kickoff for the game will be at 7 p.m. at East Liverpool’s Patterson Field. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. with player introductions at 6:30 p.m.