October 27 – Oradell, NJ – In thirty days, the thirty-one year tradition that represented the best of BC and DBP will be renewed after a thirty-two year hiatus. The Ironmen will visit the Crusaders on Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, November 26, 2020 at 10:30 am. The two schools competed against one another for 31 consecutive years, starting in 1958, when BC Head Coach John Maziotta devised a plan to defeat DBP 14-0 in Bergen’s inaugural year of football.
Thirty years and 31 games later in 1988, the rivalry went on a long hiatus due to BC’s inclusion into the now-defunct NNJIL Atlantic, comprised of the larger public schools in North Jersey and BC and the NNJIL Pacific, comprised primarily of slightly smaller publics, DBP, SJR and PC.
Interestingly, 1988 was Head Coach Fred Stengel’s first season leading the Crusaders. The win over DBP, 17-6, followed up a 20-7 victory over Ridgewood HS the week before and ensured a winning season. Hall of Fame Coach Stengel would go on to become Bergen Catholic’s All-Time Winningest Coach, putting together 192 victories and a .797 winning percentage over 22 years. His teams won 9 State Championships including undefeated teams in 1991, 1992, 1998.
There will be much, much more to talk about in the lead-up to this historic game.