IRVINGTON – The Irvington High School varsity football program over the years has boasted several players who have earned collegiate football scholarships.
Add a few more to that list.
Jasiah Provillon, a wide receiver, and quarterback Jyvon Brown have received several scholarship offers.
Provillon, only a sophomore, was offered by the University of Michigan and Boston College, both on May 24, giving him five total offers. The other two offers are from Penn State, Texas State and James Madison University.
Brown, a junior who will be a four-year starting quarterback for the Blue Knights, also has received offers from Texas State and James Madison, in addition to Monmouth University.
Ashley “Smoke” Pierre, who was named the new IHS football coach in April after joining the Blue Knights coaching last year as an assistant, is thrilled for Provillon and Brown.
“They are the definition of Irvington; guys that come to work everyday and do what is asked of them,” said coach Smoke, who grew up in Irvington. “They do well academically and they are students of the game.”
Coach Smoke also mentioned a few other Blue Knights who are “scholarship guys that will play on the next level.” They include current juniors Nelson Gedeon, Tymir Lassiter, Chazz Perez, and Justin Torain, and current sophomores Nim Salaam and Lance Turay.
Michigan, under head coach Jim Harbaugh, has attracted several New Jersey players, including Irvington resident Kareem Walker, an All-American running back who played at DePaul in Wayne and will enter his freshman year at Ann Arbor. Another Michigan Wolverine is defensive back Jabrill Peppers of East Orange.
Provillon transferred to IHS last fall and played for the Blue Knights, coming over from Queen of Peace in North Arlington.
Provillon expressed his gratitude for receiving scholarship offers.
“Michigan, Boston College and Penn State are big schools and when I heard I got an offer from those three schools I was shocked because I’ve always dreamed of playing big Division 1 football,” said Provillon via a tweet to the Irvington Herald. “I just want to thank my new head coach, coach Smoke, because he gives 110 percent effort when it comes to the team and he takes care of us a lot and he is trying to make sure we all become nice young men with a future.”
Brown also is thrilled about his scholarship offers.
“It’s actually a dream come true, to have these colleges look at me,” Brown said in a phone interview.
The Blue Knights will be in the newly-formed North Jersey Super Football Conference. The conference is a merger of four conferences: Big North Conference, Super Essex Conference, Northwest Jersey Athletic Conference, and Hudson County Interscholastic Athletic Association.
The Blue Knights are in Freedom Division B, which includes Wayne Hills, Passaic Valley, Wayne Valley, Millburn and Belleville.
Last season, the Blue Knights, who competed in the Super Essex Conference, finished with a 3-7 record.
Provillon and Brown are excited about the upcoming season in the fall.
“My goals as a player is to do better than last year,” Provillon said. “I have to make plays and let my team know that they can count on me when they need me. And for the team, we want to do better as a whole this season. We have been working hard all off-season and we are coming into the season with a lot of confidence and we are ready for Week 1.”
Said Brown: “Last year didn’t come out the way we wanted. This year is going to set it off. It’s going to be a different Irvington team. I think this year’s team is going to be really good. We have a lot of athletes on this team.”
Brown said he threw for 1,500 yards last year. This year, he wants to throw 1,800 or 1,900 yards and at least 25 touchdown passes.
Brown also was happy when he found out that coach Smoke was named the new head coach.
“He is like a father figure,” Brown said. “He looks after everybody. I was actually very happy when he got the head coaching job.”