CHARLESTON—The Grafton High School football season may have ended in November, but for a couple of local faces, it isn’t over just quite yet. Grafton’s own Mickey Foley and Caleb Bish will be taking part in this season’s North/South All-Star football game to be held at South Charleston High School on Saturday, June 8, at noon.
Foley, a long-time Grafton assistant coach and current offensive coordinator for the Bearcats, will be coaching the North Bears’ defense, while Bish will be putting his skills on display in Charleston as one of the Bears’ featured running backs.
Bish, who just finished a stellar career at Grafton, where he was the team’s leading rusher for the past two seasons, landed on the 2018 Big 10 First Team while earning All-State Honorable Mention accolades along the way. This past season he rushed for 1,125 yards on 210 carries with 15 TD’s and accounted for 49 of the team’s total tackles on defense.
“When the season was over, Coach Harman called to let me know that I had been selected” Bish said referring to Liberty (Harrison) High School and North Bears Head Coach A.J. Harman. “I was really excited because all season long that had been a goal of mine. When I first got down here, it was a little different because I didn’t know a lot of the guys, but now that we’ve practiced and hung out together, everything’s good now.”
When asked to describe a normal day’s practice, Bish added “We practice for two hours every day. We start off with a warmup, go to individual/position drills, run some 7-on-7 stuff and then scrimmage. And having Coach Foley here makes me a lot more comfortable, because whenever I have a question about something I can just go to him.”
Foley isn’t a stranger to coaching defense as he was the Bearcats’ defensive coordinator from 2009-2012 and again in 2016.
“It’s unbelievable the amount of talent we have down here” Foley said. “Defensively, we have a ton of kids that can play ball. Up front, we have guys that can really get the job done. Our linebacking crew is very physical. And on the back-end we have kids that are really smart and can get people lined up the way they need to be. These kids are also very coachable. I was able to bring my son to Charleston with me, and the players have taken to him and that means a lot to me.”
When asked his thoughts on Bish, Foley stated “Caleb is a special kid. When you put him on the field you know he’s going to work hard, and when he puts the pads on, he can really play the game. I’m extremely proud of him for being selected to come here.”
As mentioned previously, the head coach for the North squad this season will be A.J. Harman from Liberty (Harrison) High School, and Harman had nothing but positive things to say about Bish as well.
“Caleb is a pure football player. At first glance you don’t know how good he is, but when he puts on the pads and helmet he’s a different animal. It’s been difficult to prepare for him the past couple of seasons, I’m just thankful that he’s on my team now,” Harman expressed.
Grafton head football coach Rich Bord was also complimentary of Foley and Bish’s selections.
“I’m extremely proud of Coach Foley. This is great exposure not only for him but also for the Grafton High School football program,” Bord said. “Coach Foley’s selection is an indication of the quality of coaches we’ve had come through this program over the years, all the way back to the Rand McKinney days. I imagine that Grafton has had just as many coaches selected for the North/South game as just about any other school.”
When asked about Bish and his future at the next level, Bord added “Caleb is a tremendous player. If he can stay healthy, he’s going to make a lot of college coaches wish they would have recruited him.”
Bish and his Bearcat teammate QB Garrett Wellman are both be headed to Fairmont State in the fall to play football for the Falcons.