Founder, Booster, Figurehead
The founder of the PBI, Blank did not start playing high school football until his late 30s, when he became a high school teacher and competed against his students. Although the cruel hands of time have relegated him to pace the sidelines and flirt with JDS mothers, Blank will be remembered as a player who was good enough not to be picked last. The true example of a team player, Blank was always willing to play offensive line or serve as permanent sub, and had a knack for being involved in many of the most bizarre plays in PBI history. Blank grew up in West Orange, NJ, where amongst locals he is best remembered for making the invite list to the bar-mitzvah of Ian Ziering, best remembered for playing Steve Sanders on the mega hit television series Beverly Hills 90210. After graduating from West Orange High School in 1979, where he was voted most likely to become a Judaic Studies teacher, Blank landed a gig at the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School in Rockville, MD, where for the last twenty years he has taught Rabbinics. Recently several former students described him on ratemyteacher.com as “hilarius and you ace the class if your funny,” and “great guy – he moves out of the way when you wanna make a right turn if you honk.” Besides teaching, Paul is an avid outdoorsman, having hiked the entire 184 miles of the C&O Canal Towpath, climbed Mount Kenya and Mount Kilimanjaro, trekked in Nepal to the base camp of Mount Everest, and walked the Marine Corps Marathon six times. In his spare time, Paul enjoys performing and is a so-so piano player and singer, having once appeared on VH1’s performers unplugged to poor reviews.
co-chairman, Grand Cyclopes of Community Outreach
Ilan’s involvement with the PBI dates back to the game’s
early years, when he served as a referee during his days as a high school
heartthrob at the Jewish Day School. The younger Fulop looked forward to
eventually competing in the PBI and showing off his quarterbacking abilities.
Heir to the Rockville Interiors throne, Ilan developed many of his
football skills from traumatic experiences during his adolescence, such as
beatings by his brother’s friends which made him physically strong, or mental
toughness from being sent away at age 6 to Hungary to attend camp Szarvas (pronounced
"Sar vash", is Hungarian for Deer) where the other campers were all
teenagers. While in high school, the PBI’s front office anointed Ilan as the
game’s future, a prospect that would rival Noah Zimmerman. The hype and fanfare
seemed warranted. On paper Ilan had all the attributes of a prototypical
quarterback; strong armed, un-Jewish like physical characteristics, and public
school learned confidence. In 2002, Ilan made his first start in the PBI, but
after five years of losses and disappointing stats, the favorite Fulop was cast
into "bust" territory by fans and game officials. However, Ilan
rescued his PBI reputation by quarterbacking his teams to victories in 2008 and
2010. Since then Ilan has allowed others to handle the quarterbacking duties
and become more of an all-purpose offensive player that can still throw
effectively when called upon. Ilan holds a degree in business from Indiana
University, has run more miles than Forest Gump, and has grown Rockville Interiors into one of the nation’s top
selling motorized window shade dealers in the country. And Ladies, he is still
single and looking to mingle.
co-chairman, Sultan of Swing & Data
The top rated quarterback in PBI history, Zimmerman did not discover football until his sophomore year in high school when he led the Rockville Razorbacks to the 1996 RFL Championship. Before committing to football, Zimmerman excelled at tennis, and although he became the first seventh grader to make the JDS Varsity Tennis team, his career record (0-11 as the #1 seed his junior season) was more pathetic than the fact that the surface at JDS’s home tennis court was asphalt. Competing in the PBI however, Zimmerman has achieved remarkable success, compiling a win-loss record of 11-4 in 15 PBI contests, from 1998-2013, on his way to owning every major passing and rushing record. Thanks to his massive, un-Jewish like size and strength, Zimmerman is able to stand strong in the pocket and pick apart defenses. An accurate pocket passer with enough mobility to scramble away from pressure, Zimmerman was named the game’s MVP twice in his career. Not only regarded as one of the best players in PBI history, Zimmerman is also the game’s biggest nerd, earning a PhD in Biomedical Informatics from Stanford University, where he also Co-hosted Nick and Noah, a radio show on KZSU. Today, Zimmerman is the Co-founder and VP of Data Science at Kyron, Inc.
Ariel “Cochran” Oxman
Chief Legal Officer
Oxman’s tremendous football career began in 1992, when during a lunchtime game on his first day of 6th grade at the Jewish Day School he chased down a much faster, much bigger, and much older Dan Fulop from behind on a long run to prevent a touchdown. From that point on Oxman established himself as one of the elite schoolyard players, however, because he pursued karate over organized football, most elders in the Montgomery County Jewish community saw the next Jean Claude Van Damm (he already spoke broken foreign English) instead of Deion Sanders. Now, 17 PBI classics and a third degree black belt later, Oxman is revered as the best defensive player in PBI history, although visits from father have reduced his effectiveness in the last several games. Still, if a quarterback needs a receiver in the clutch, you can count on Oxman getting the ball. The 2008 MVP, Oxman has also achieved success in the professional world. Despite never being known to have any mack, or game with the ladies, Oxman co-founded QuieroLatino.com, an online dating site for English-speaking Latinos. Today Oxman makes and breaks Wall Street big-wigs as a Corporate Attorney of Mergers & Acquisitions at Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP in New York City.
Event Continuity Atache
Most people who knew Elliot Totah growing up may be
surprised to learn that this smooth Sephard excels on the gridiron. As a
young JDSer, the fly and flashy dancer dominated the lower school dance-party
circuit. By high school his vibrant high C's and ebullient showmanship
made him the most beloved and celebrated member of the Jewish Day School a
cappella troupe. But once Totah drapes himself in the PBI penny all that
estrogen filled sensitivity is replaced by an intense competitive demeanor, a
gung ho spirit that has made him one of the most fearless performers. Extremely
versatile, Totah is apt at playing every position on offense and defense,
exhibiting his athleticism by stuffing a ball carrier one play and hauling in a
pass fifty yards downfield the next. Besides being a PBI fixture, Totah is a
self-taught wine connoisseur, owns a portable discothèque
speaker, and finished in 67th place (out of 73 racers) at the 2009 Directors
Invitational Ski Classic. Never shy around the ladies, his suave charm
garnered a $350 bid ($400 minimum bid) from a bachelorette during a celebrity
auction benefiting the Put Your Best Foot Forward charity. Totah has a
background in both Information Systems and Finance, earning a degree from the
Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. Today, Elliot is a Real
Estate Developer based out of Washington, DC. He also serves as Vice President
of Magen David Sephardic Congregation, and writes a blog for The Times of Israel.
Deputy of Digital History and Archives
Revisiting the PBI career of Dan Fulop, who
holds the distinction as the game’s most injury prone player, is a painful
journey down memory lane that includes several stops at Suburban Hospital. The
injury bug first bit the brittle Hungarian in the closing minutes of the 2002
game, when with his team ahead by 34 points, he suffered a broken right ankle
during a clock killing drive. Two years later, Fulop missed the 2004 game while
recovering from a torn ACL (non-PBI sustained). Misfortune struck again in the
2005 contest when Fulop suffered a dislocated left elbow, another gruesome
injury that occurred in the closing minutes of the game. Over a five year
span (2000-2005) during the prime of his career, Fulop suffered six injuries to
his bones or ligaments, including sprains, separations, breaks, fractures, and
tears. Despite being labeled "injury prone," Fulop was once regarded
as an athletic and acrobatic receiver, and when not leaving the field in an
ambulance, his crisply run routes and sure-hands made him a reliable target.
The most memorable of the elder Fulop’s heroics occurred in the epic 1999
contest when he hauled in the winning touchdown in the final seconds. Once
injuries had robbed him of any athletic talent, the lanky red head became a
fixture on the offensive and defensive line. Off the field, and before devoting
his life to selling window treatments and joining the family business,
Rockville Interiors, Fulop was formerly the curator for the San Diego Hall of
Champions sports museum, and published a book about the area’s sports history.
ASSOCIATE GEEK SQUAD WANNABE
Aaron Schooler's illustrious sports career began in the cradle when he flung his bottle over the crossbar for his first field goal. By kindergarten, he was playing travel t-ball and MSI soccer. It was the following winter when he attempted to jump into the C&O Canal only to whack his head on the frozen surface that he discovered his true passion - hockey - and continued to play competitively for 10 years. Although he wanted to play football in a local league, his mommy wouldn't let him for fear of getting injured. He began playing in the PBI in 2006, as soon as his college football eligibility expired and was an immediate star, to the surprise of himself and everyone around him. All the years of skating backwards finally came in handy as he instantly became a defensive star on the gridiron, in spite of being paired with Michael Feldman ('06) to form a shutdown corner duo. Aaron has displayed some streakiness over the years, and though he has had some high profile flag-pulling gaffes, has always responded well to criticism and pulled it together at the end of games. Perhaps his most outstanding moment was a game-winning, eyes-closed TD catch in the closing moments of the 2012 invitational, winning the MVP (because they always remember the very last thing you did). Aaron is an avid fan of the Capitals and the Nationals and a devotee of ESPN's Colin Cowherd. He partied it up at Syracuse University, where he held several elected positions at AEPi as well as a number that no one else wanted, before moving to NYC and earning a Master's at NYU. Today, Aaron works at an Israeli-owned private equity firm in NYC which he describes as "just like being at JDS, only they pay you."
From an early age, Michael Feldman has had a tumultuous, David and Batsheva-like relationship with football. Raised playing 1 on 1 street football with fellow JDS-er (and now Rabbi) Jon Leener (JDS class of 2006), Michael was well prepared for the hard knocks of Paul Blank (and his invitational). Michael’s incredibly mediocre track record in the PBI started in 2005, where he served as a referee. Even then, scholars and the lone fan observed that he seemed to “run like a duck”. This waddle would only become more evident throughout his PBI career, and many would even revive his middle school nickname of “Ducky”. Since those early days, he has been consistently underwhelming (with the exception of one MVP performance in 2009, where he recorded a TD catch, an interception, and showed agility inconsistent with the PVAC). His leadership of the younger team’s defense in recent years, though effective, has been described as “overbearing” and “who are you asking me about?”. Despite his short-statured shortcomings, he continues to be “finishing up medical school” for the fourth year in a row. He plans on becoming a pediatric brain surgeon, in a likely futile attempt to get Jewish mothers to give him their daughters’ digits. He also has attempted to follow in the liturgical strides of past PBI-leader Dr. Noah “The Ark” Zimmerman, with similarly ludicrously titled works of non-fiction, such as “Effects of intravenous adenosine infusion on cerebral hemodynamics”. Michael likes short non-strenuous walks on the beach and listening to recordings of old JDS middle school musicals.
Under Secretary of Corporate Partnerships & Public Affairs
Rumor has it that a person once called Jonathan Sachs the most interesting man in the world. This has never been confirmed, and in all likelihood never happened. A lifer at CESJDS, Sachs began in the orange halls of the old building at the age of five and stayed for a bar-mitzvah-length (and equally awkward) 13 years. Known then as "JJ", he was perhaps best known for his lead role in the Off-Broadway production of the JDS Hebrew-language middle-school musical Salach Shabbati. He is also widely acclaimed as one of the founders (if the term can carry such insignificance) of the JDS ultimate Frisbee team. He also has always been fond of politics, and was caught rigging JDS class council election ballets one year, just out of passion. A “lifer” at the PBI, JJ started as a ref in 2005, and was pretty much unrecognized until 2010. That year, Sachs scored one of the most controversial touchdowns in Paul J. Blank history, running the ball in after members of the other team heard an alleged “whistle”. Asked after the game, Sachs gloated at the opposition’s misfortune and remarked "Still counts". JJ now works for a local hospital system doing something that no one understands or frankly would bother to read about. He also is a lifelong fan of that football team with as he says “that offensive name”.