Paramus Catholic releases 2023 football schedule: Full breakdown

Seeking its first winning season since 2016, Paramus Catholic has booked 10 regular season games under second-year coach Greg Russo, including the school’s first out-of-state trip since 2018.

The Paladins, who went 2-8 in 2022, will open the season with a game against Cleveland Heights in Ohio.

Russo's status remains in limbo. He was suspended for four games by the NJSIAA for his connection to alleged illegal recruiting by a member of his staff, but has appealed the punishment and will have hearing in March.

While most of the North Jersey non-public superpowers scheduled nine regular season games, Paramus Catholic will play 10 and not take a bye. NJSIAA rules allow non-public teams to play 10 regular season games since there is one less round of the non-public playoffs.

Paramus Catholic Football at Hudson Catholic on Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022. PC #7 QB Kievon Harper.
Paramus Catholic Football at Hudson Catholic on Saturday, Sept. 3, 2022. PC #7 QB Kievon Harper.

Here’s a full breakdown of the Paladins' 2023 schedule. Times and locations are subject to change.

Aug. 26: at Cleveland Heights (Ohio), TBA

Paramus Catholic hasn’t played an Ohio school since 2014, when it beat St. Ignatius in double-overtime. This will be the Paladins' first trip to the Buckeye State since 2013.

Cleveland Heights coming off a 10-2 season, and lost to St. Ignatius in the OHSAA Division 1 regional quarterfinals, 50-49, after leading the game 42-14 at halftime. The Kelce brothers: Travis (Chiefs) and Jason (Eagles) of Super Bowl LVII fame, both graduated from Cleveland Heights.

Sept. 1: vs. Hudson Catholic, 6 p.m.

The Paladins and Hawks went back and forth in last year’s season opener before Hudson Catholic pulled out a 35-28 win. This will be the fifth meeting all time between the two schools, with the Paladins owning a 3-1 series edge.

Sept. 8: vs. Pope John, 6 p.m.

The Lions handed Paramus Catholic a tough one-point loss in 2022. It was the third straight win for Pope John in this series, which dates back to 2014.

Sept. 16: at Chaminade (N.Y.), TBA

The Flyers were 5-5 in 2022, and fell to Paramus Catholic, 21-20, in 2022. The victory snapped an 18-game losing streak by the Paladins.

Sept. 22: at DePaul, 7 p.m.

DePaul is the defending Non-Public B state champion and has beaten the Paladins five times in a row. Last year was a 44-22 win for the Spartans.

Sept. 30: at Delbarton, 1 p.m.

Paramus Catholic won its first state championship in 1997 by beating Delbarton 30-28 in the final. The Paladins coach at the time was Mike Campanile, the father of the four Campanile brothers who have become coaches. Paramus Catholic leads the all-time series between the two schools, 5-2.

Oct. 6: vs. Seton Hall Prep, 6 p.m.

The highlight of the Paladins' 2022 season was a 20-17 win over Seton Hall Prep, a team that eventually reached the Non-Public A semifinals. Michael Sorrentino drilled a 21-yard field goal late in the first half and the Paladins defense held on.

Oct. 13: vs. St. Peter’s Prep, 6 p.m.

The Marauders scored 70 points against Paramus Catholic in 2022, the most ever given up by the Paladins (PC scored 41). St. Peter’s has won six in a row in this series.

Oct. 20: at Don Bosco, 7 p.m.

Current Don Bosco coach Dan Sabella directed Paramus Catholic to a state title in 2016 while Russo served as his offensive coordinator. Don Bosco is the last North Jersey Big Six team that Paramus Catholic beat, back in 2017.

Oct. 27: vs. Bergen Catholic, 6 p.m.

The Crusaders and Paladins were Thanksgiving Day rivals and have a storied history. The schools are separated by four miles. Paramus Catholic downed Bergen Catholic, 37-34, in the Non-Public Group 4 state final in the Game of the Decade back in 2010, but has gone just 2-7 against the Crusaders since then, including shutout losses in 2018, 2020 and 2021.

This article originally appeared on Paramus Catholic NJ football: 2023 schedule breakdown