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Football: Eamon McOsker had a season to remember

November 22, 2011 |  8:00 am

Football, turkey and Notre Dame. Those are the usual topics of discussion when more than 30 members of the McOsker family gather for Thanksgiving in San Pedro. They’re thoroughly Irish, from rooting for their beloved university in South Bend, Ind., to having first names straight out of an address book in Ireland.

What’s different this Thanksgiving is that Los Angeles Loyola senior Eamon McOsker will get the star treatment. He was named the defensive most valuable player in the Serra League this season. His older brother, Garrity, a boxer and rugby player at Notre Dame, and his younger brother, Conlon, a freshman football player at Torrance Bishop Montgomery, aren’t going to receive their usual gushing reception at grandmother’s house.

That’s going to be reserved for Eamon. Not that Eamon wants to do anything to upset Garrity, 19, who still has a pretty good uppercut.

“For the first 13 years, I would try [to box him], but after that I gave up and tried to avoid all contact,” Eamon said. “I learned.”

The middle boy in a family of five siblings had a year to cherish. McOsker, 6 feet 2, 193 pounds, returned kickoffs, was the long snapper on punts, made clutch catches and slammed into ballcarriers as a strong safety.

“He plays so many positions and is such a hard-nosed kid,” Coach Mike Christensen said. “He can pretty much do whatever you need him to do. Toughness runs in his family. It’s that Irish in him.”

His father, Tim, works for Notre Dame on the West Coast. Eamon, however, has Ivy League aspirations, and any school that gets him will be fortunate.

“I think he’s our best player,” Christensen said.

Loyola was eliminated in the first round of the Pac-5 Division playoffs, but McOsker had a 93-yard kickoff return for a touchdown.

That’s McOsker -- giving it his all every game.

-- Eric Sondheimer

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