By: USA TODAY High School Sports | September 20, 2018
No. 3 Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.) will host No. 1 IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.) in one of the biggest high school games of the year Friday, but Jeremiah Criddell and Sean Dollars had some business to attend to first.
The Oregon commits received their Under Armour All America jerseys Thursday when the American Family Insurance Selection Tour made its stop at their school.
“It was a good experience,” Dollars said. “It feels good.
“We saw the ceremony at Rancho Cucamonga when Thomas Graham and Jaylen Redd got their jerseys, and we were like, ‘we’re up next,’ and this day finally came. We’re with each other 24/7, so we have that bond. It’s just a good moment with my brother.”
Criddell echoed that sentiment.
“It was a great feeling,” he said. “We’re fulfilling a purpose we always wanted to fulfill.
“It’s cool to see somebody grow with you and get better and challenge each other, but it’s just football. At the end of the day, we’re brothers, and it was good to have someone to be there with me.”
Dollars and Criddell transferred into Mater Dei together, and the two have known each other since they were kids. The decision to go to Oregon together wasn’t necessarily planned, but it seemed there’d be little chance they’d spend their college years apart.
“We kind of do everything together, but we always told each other not to make a decision based off one another,” Dollars said. “It just came into play that we were both in a good position to go to Oregon and see the field early and get some playing time.”
Even though Thursday was a day of celebration, the IMG game wasn’t far from either player’s mind.
“I’m so anxious right now,” Dollars said. “It’s going to be a very evenly matched game with two of the top high schools in the nation. It’s going to be a great game. I’ve been waiting on a game like this since Day 1.”
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