‘Po Perfection

Quarterback Jack Grusser funnels the ball into Ethan Moran for a run.


Quarterback Jack Grusser funnels the ball into Ethan Moran for a run.

Cooper Poggioli, Sports Assistant Editor

The vivid green and the ominous black turf glistening in the shine of the high beam stadium lights  guarding the sacred Friday night tradition from above; Ramapo Football is back like it never left. There’s no question about the environment Ramapo has built with the formidable presence of its sports programs, funneling students into Division 1 colleges all over the country. Standing as the prominent symbol of Ramapo High School, ‘Po Football marks the epicenter of student pride; every home game, the student section fills up like moths to a light with the expectations of yet another win over the unfortunate beings in the way of the forcible wave of green and white that will inevitably incinerate defenses.

After bidding farewell to now-Harvard Quarterback, Charles Deprima (Ramapo Class of 2021), Ramapo Football was left with some substantial shoes to fill for Jack Grusser, and it’s safe to say he is doing everything he can to prove he belongs in the same conversation as the former QB1. Deprima wasn’t the only loss that Ramapo faced after the departure of last year’s seniors. The class of ‘21 was loaded with an abundance of raw talent that could tear other team’s offensive and defensive lines to shreds, leaving a wake of disheartened football players. Both high school and college sports programs alike have the potential of being devastated as the senior class retires to their next endeavor, spawning dilemmas in teams that coaches lose sleep over. 

But not ‘Po. Like the limbs of a severed starfish, Ramapo Football returns each August stronger than their predecessors. With a streamline of talent flooding into the school each year, this public school has been making its mark in the eyes of New Jersey sports fans. After their incredible 26-0 run last year, they picked up exactly where they left off, starting the 2021 season still undefeated with a record of 6-0. Ramapo’s immaculate feat of going perfect for the last 31 games. 

Among the many components that make the wheel of success in the football program turn, Assistant Coach Mike Esposito, or “Espo” as he’s known, is emblematic of the energy that is carried through the season. If you found yourself in the bleachers under the Friday night lights, you would be sure to notice the animated Esposito and his unmatched enthusiasm. Sprinting up and down the sidelines during every play with his sporadic gestures, Esposito so perfectly embodies the drive and energy that goes into the perfection that Ramapo demonstrates. Upon asking Esposito about this football season, he quotes head coach Drew Gibbs in saying, “The boys are off to a great start in the season. We have strong leadership from the senior class; all the players in the program are making contributions to the team. We are looking forward to and excited for the playoff run.” Straight from Coach Gibbs, we are going to have to prepare for yet another outstanding run. 

And the success is starting to grow on the school as a whole. Starting with the football team, the success has spread throughout all of the sports at Ramapo, solidifying a reputation of athletic excellence. A unique culture has emerged on campus and it is becoming apparent to all. As a result, Ramapo’s baseball, softball, and soccer teams have become powerhouses, competing with private schools that recruit from all corners of New Jersey. Instilling fear into anyone who steps on the field with the ‘Po Army, I believe we are preparing for another year chock-full of amazing football performances.