Thursday, December 06, 2012
Tai Tiedemann has a tremendous supporting role
The nominee for best supporting player in a drama for the 2012 Long Beach high school football season is Poly quarterback Tai Tiedemann.
Quarterbacks are rarely cast as supporting players in football.
Quarterbacks are stars. They're Jack Nicholson, Robert DeNiro or Denzel Washington, all Best Actor Oscar winners. No one ever said the Denver Broncos' offense revolved around anyone but John Elway; ditto for Peyton Manning in Indianapolis and Tom Brady in New England.
But at a few places, quarterbacks are background players. Long Beach Poly is one of those places, where CIF and Moore League champions have traditionally been built around running backs, big offensive lines and swift defensive players. That's how Poly won the CIF Southern Section Pac-5 Division title Saturday and why it will host Clovis North in a SoCal Regional Bowl on Friday at Veterans Stadium.
That doesn't mean a Poly quarterback can't occasionally have a breakthrough performance. Tiedemann did in 2012.
The junior didn't get into a game until the fourth of the season and shared the quarterback job with Eban Jackson during the Moore League season, but he has flourished in the postseason.
He had a 26-yard run for a touchdown in the win over Bishop Amat, was efficient (6 for 8) in the upset of Mission Viejo, stepped up with four third-down completions in the win over St. John Bosco, including a critical 34-yard pass to John Smith on the game-winning drive, and hrew two touchdown passes in the first half in the Pac-5 final against Mater Dei.