Frankford’s Tim DiGiorgio ready for final college season

The 2013 Frankford graduate went from being a spectator to starting quarterback.

Tim DiGiorgio put up monster numbers at Frankford. Now he’s going into his senior year at East Stroudsburg, where he’ll be the starting quarterback. Bob Shank/ESU Athletics

Sometimes a college visit can change your life.

It certainly did for Tim DiGiorgio. Funny thing was, it wasn’t even his visit.

DiGiorgio, a 2013 graduate of Frankford High School, had decided he was going to transfer out of Temple University, and he was in the process of choosing a new school.

He still had two years of eligibility left, and schools are always looking for a quality quarterback, but DiGiorgio was coming off of three seasons as mostly a spectator, so he wasn’t sure what was out there.

“It’s funny, Albie Crosby, the football coach, was up at East Stroudsburg for his daughter, who was visiting, looking for a school,” DiGiorgio said. “I’m not sure what happened, but he started talking to their football coaches and he told them about me. We’re friends, he’s a great guy.

“He told me to give them a call, so I did, and then I went up for a visit and it was everything I wanted. It was a great school, a great football program, great coaches. I knew right away it’s where I wanted to be.”

Making the decision was easy. Getting back on the field was anything but.

The first thing that stood in DiGiorgio’s way was he was at first ineligible because a few of his credits didn’t transfer from Temple. After a few months, that was straightened out, and since he was doing well in the classroom, he was deemed eligible midway through the 2016 season.

Then there was the whole getting back on the field thing that was a struggle.

DiGiorgio has all the gifts to be a great quarterback. He’s big — standing 6 foot 3 and weighing 210 pounds. He’s strong and he’s accurate with the football. At Frankford, in two seasons, he threw for 4,000 yards and 44 touchdowns, which ranked second in Public League history.

But having struggled to get on the field at Temple, DiGiorgio had some doubts when he arrived at East Stroudsburg.

“The biggest thing was my confidence, I had to get that back,” DiGiorgio said. “At Temple, I wasn’t playing. I was really depressed. It’s hard when you play your whole life and you think you’re going to play, and you don’t get in. I didn’t get reps, and that definitely affected the way I look at football. I wasn’t having fun.”

The fun is back on.

After seeing limited time during October, DiGiorgio was named starter for the final four games of the season and he completed 104 passes for 1,226 yards and eight touchdowns. He also threw five interceptions.

“I didn’t play my best, but I definitely felt more comfortable as the season went on,” DiGiorgio said. “This year, I feel even more part of the team. But last year, it felt good to get back in the game and do what I love to do.”

Not getting an opportunity was rough, but it was still a chance to practice with a Division I program. It also helped him develop as a player while he was observing from the sidelines.

“I don’t regret going to Temple,” DiGiorgio said. “It’s unfortunate for me that I wasn’t able to play, but it was a great opportunity to learn. I learned a lot from being there, you can see a lot of things when you’re trying to learn.”

This year, he won’t have as much to learn, and he’s had plenty of time to gel with his teammates during the summer.

“We’re staying up here for the summer, and we’re working out,” DiGiorgio said. “We have a good freshmen team. We want to win a (Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference) championship. I’m 100 percent more comfortable. And I have the experience of playing last year. Practicing is good, but playing in a game has a whole different feel.”

While he waits to begin his final year of college football, DiGiorgio is keeping busy up the mountains. He’s working as a security job at a water park.

“Mostly, I just help kids find their parents or deal with people who come drunk, other than that, it’s an easy job,” DiGiorgio said. “And anyone who works there is allowed to go for free on their day off and a lot of us work there, so that’s cool.”

Now, DiGiorgio is ready to make some noise. Almost as much noise as his father produces at his games.

His dad is a huge Frankford fan, and is still one of the loudest Pioneer fan even though his son graduated.

But next year, he might be forced to miss a few games to watch his favorite quarterback.

“My parents are going to go to every game, home and away,” said DiGiorgio, who is majoring in business. “They were so supportive of me when I was trying to play. When I wasn’t playing, they helped me. I’m doing this for me and them. Seeing how happy they were when I started playing was the greatest feeling.” ••