County’s best often best in Big Ten

Yesterday we watched Hubbard’s L.J. Scott, a former Trumbull County Player of the Year, almost knock Ohio State out of the College Football Playoffs.

Scott continued a fine season at Michigan State with some big plays against the Buckeyes, who ultimately prevailed, 17-16. That result kept OSU on its usual collision course with Michigan in the regular season finale.

The Wolverines defeated Indiana on Saturday behind the excellent running of Howland’s De’Veon Smith, who also is a former Trumbull County Player of the Year. Scott won the award after the 2014 season and Smith won following the 2012 campaign.

The 2016 winner will be announced a week from tomorrow — Nov. 28 — when the Trumbull County Coaches Association holds its annual banquet at Leo’s Ristorante in Howland.

The winner of the award is decided by a vote of media who cover Trumbull County football, but the TCCA is in charge of the banquet and does an outstanding job with it every year.

You can find the list of the senior players nominated by the 16 football-playing schools in the county on Page 7D.

Guest speakers at this year’s banquet are scheduled to be Rep. Tim Ryan, another former Player of the Year — 1990 as John F. Kennedy’s quarterback — and former Girard head coach and YSU assistant coach, Fred Thomas, now head coach at Malone University.

It’s a pleasure for Mahoning Valley football fans to watch Big Ten football each weekend, seeing stars like Scott and Smith continue to stand out at the next level. And they are not the only ones, with Iowa’s Leshun Daniels Jr. and Indiana’s Devine Redding also former area high school stars.

The TCCA has always done a great job of recognizing the area’s top players and the Tribune Chronicle tries to do the same thing.

Today’s edition includes more all-district and all-conference selections in fall sports, and a capsule look at some of the area’s winter sports teams.

We will publish the all-county football team later this week and plan on finishing up the all-league selections next Sunday.

In addition, preseason capsules of area boys and girls basketball teams will be published on Friday.

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