Dillon Janca’s prolific football career officially came to an end Thursday following the 42nd Annual Kensington Lions All Star Classic at Depew High-School.
Janca, a three-year starter at quarterback for the Quakers, was named a captain and starter for the South All Stars who were led by head coach Glen Graham of Cleveland Hill High School. In a game largely contested between the opposing teams’ twenty-five yard lines, the South defeated the North by a score of 13-6. Janca split time under center with Cheektowaga’s Erik Bartnik, the South All Stars’ offensive MVP, and Depew’s Jon Wolf.
For not having played a snap since late last fall, Janca looked as if he hasn’t missed a beat. He ran the offense like the seasoned veteran that he is and his teammates, albeit from various south town schools, immediately felt his presence as the leader on the field. Cheektowaga’s 6’3” receiver Stephan Parker was Janca’s favorite target as the two connected a handful of times throughout the game. Dillon said of Parker “He’s a beast. He’s tall, fast, and once you get the ball in his hands…that’s it.” The pair made it look as if they had been playing together for years.
On the Saturday, July 15th episode of Inside High School Sports on WGR 550, Janca had mentioned another Cheektowaga standout, running back Seven Turpin, as someone in particular he was looking forward to playing with again, referencing the days when the two played Little Loop football together. The two did not disappoint in their reunion as the speedy Turpin and Janca both ran the ball out of the back field efficiently and effectively.
After considering moving on to the collegiate level and continuing to play, Janca admitted that after tonight he is ready to ‘hang ‘em’ up, so to speak, and that he is happy with his accomplishments and the memories he has been able to make spanning twelve years of organized football. Reflecting on his career, he said “I am ready to move on to the next part of life. I am happy with what I have done and I had a pretty good career for myself. I had a lot of accolades and made a lot of memories along the way so I am ready to move on and I am happy with what I did and I will definitely always remember it.”
While Janca won’t be playing football at the collegiate level, he will certainly be in the heart of football country as he will be attending Texas Christian University (TCU) in Fort Worth, Texas. TCU’s football team is a perennial powerhouse in the Big 12 Conference (Division 1-A). Coach Gary Patterson’s Horned Frogs won the 2011 Rose Bowl and were Big 12 champions as recently as 2014.
When asked about his future with football and the possibility of coaching Janca said “I could see myself helping out at a high school or definitely, one day when I have kids, coaching them like my dad did for me.”
While Janca’s career has come to an end, he mentioned up and coming sophomore quarterback Jack Sharp as possibly the next gunslinger for the Quakers and someone to “definitely watch out for.”
***Photo Credit ~ Cal Phillips/WNYAthletics.com***