PLAYOFF PROFILES : Twins Enjoy Growth Spurt
Identical twins Brant and Brock Diediker were such tiny things, weighing under five pounds each at birth. They came seven weeks early, and their parents, Tom and Sherrie, nourished and nurtured the little guys to their present . . . 230 pounds each.
“I guess it’s proof that your size at birth has nothing to do with how big you’ll eventually be,” Sherrie Diediker said.
The Diedikers, both 6 feet 2, loom especially large in Newbury Park High football uniforms. Senior two-way starters, they lead the unbeaten Panthers into the Southern Section Division III quarterfinals Friday.
On offense, Brock, a fullback, has rushed for a team-high 726 yards and 13 touchdowns, averaging 7.2 yards a carry. Brant, a guard, pulls and makes key blocks on Brock’s favorite counter play. Brant also helps protect quarterback Chris Czernek, the state’s leading passer with 3,593 yards.
On defense, the Diedikers play inside linebacker in the Panthers’ 5-2 alignment, standing side by side and snarling in stereo.
“They are two of the best linebackers in the state,” Newbury Park defensive coordinator Doug Dagan said.
The Diedikers, nearly straight-A students, already have been offered full scholarships by BYU. Several Pacific 10 Conference schools call them regularly.
“We talk about going to the same school, but we haven’t decided,” Brant said.
A single college offering twins scholarships is rare, but the Diedikers complement one another so well an exception might be made.
“When one starts playing well, the other one picks up the level of his game,” Newbury Park Coach George Hurley said.
Hurley wanted the Diedikers to play varsity when they were sophomores, but their father balked, believing they lacked the maturity. Tom Diediker allowed his sons to join the varsity for the playoffs, when the Panthers finished 14-0.
Brant and Brock have made up for lost time. For the past two seasons, they have rarely left the field.
“I get pretty winded at times,” Brock said. “But by this time we are used to it. We want to get the most out of this season.”