The Cardinals senior lives with his grandfather, Notre Dame legend Bob Dove.
By JOE SCALZO
VINDICATOR SPORTS STAFF
CANFIELD -- Tim Dewberry was just a sophomore when he first caught the eye of the Canfield High football coaches.
"I was running in our Hoot and Holler drill when I hit a player, popped his helmet off and ran for a touchdown," Dewberry recalled with a smile. "They decided to put me at fullback."
The Cardinal coaches knew what a good football player looked like. So does Dewberry.
The Canfield senior lives with his grandfather, Bob Dove -- a legendary defensive end for South High and Notre Dame who later played eight years in the NFL for the Chicago Rockets and Chicago Cardinals.
"He's told me a lot of football stories," Dewberry said. "One day I was watching the History Channel and I saw some old Notre Dame film. It was pretty neat to see him play."
Hall of Fame bloodlines
Dove was a two-time All-American (1941-42) at Notre Dame and later served as an assistant coach for YSU from 1969 to 1991. He was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2000.
"There's no doubt Tim has great bloodlines," Canfield coach Mike Pavlansky said.
Dewberry (6-foot, 180 pounds) played for Jackson-Milton his freshman year before transferring to Canfield, where he now plays safety and running back. He's a big reason why the Cardinals have started the season 4-0, said Pavlansky.
"He's a great defensive back and there's no doubt he'll play Division I or I-AA football," Pavlansky said. "Whoever lands him should be excited about having him for the next four to five years."
Dewberry was a starter on Canfield's playoff team two years ago and said this year's team is even better.
"I feel like we have more talent," Dewberry, a member of National Honor Society, said. "Everything is set. We have a balanced offensive attack and a tremendous defense. I've been told that this class is one of the most athletic we've had here."
As a sophomore, he rushed for 1,386 yards and 20 touchdowns. Last year, his rushing total dipped to 599, but his average rose to 5.1 yards.
So far, he has 21 carries for 178 yards. Dewberry scored three touchdowns in last week's win over Wilson.
The Cardinals face their biggest test of the season when they play host to undefeated Howland (4-0) on Friday.
But with three-year lettermen Leo Sorice and Mike Turjanica and 17 returning starters from last year, Dewberry is just a piece of the larger puzzle.
"Tim got more carries earlier in his career, but now he's being spelled on offense for the betterment of the team," Pavlansky said. "He's part of a tremendous senior class that's not concerned with individual statistics. They just want to be put in a position to succeed on Friday night."
Dewberry also wants to eventually succeed on Saturday afternoons. He was wearing a YSU football T-shirt at practice on Tuesday.
When asked if he would like to play for the Penguins, he smiled.
"I certainly wouldn't mind," he said.