Bloomington, Ind. – Bloomington North will host rival Bloomington South on Friday night in their annual crosstown showdown. The rivalry game will have a couple of familiar foes in Aidan Steinfeldt and Tysen Smith, a rivalry that goes beyond the football field. Aiden Steinfeldt is a junior at Bloomington North. A talented football player, Steinfeldt is ranked by 247Sports as 3-Star Tight End prospect. Steinfeldt holds several power-five scholarship offers including one from his hometown Indiana Hoosiers. Across town at Bloomington South, likewise, Tysen Smith has peaked as top football prospect in the class of 2024 in Indiana. Also ranked as a 3-Star prospect, Smith is seen to be more of a versatile football player in the eyes of college coaches. The two “BTown Stars” share a history of competing against each other since their youth days. Seeing them in interact, it’s more like a brotherhood than a bitter rivalry. Don’t get it twisted. The two are keeping score.

Bloomington North’s Aidan Steinfeldt and Bloomington South’s Tysen Smith, share an interesting amount of attributes, college scholarship offers and play the same offensive position. In addition, the two have played along side each other and against one another since youth football. Steinfeldt recalled that he met Tysen Smith in Canton, Ohio in the 6th grade at a youth football tournament. The two would face off many more times in the local youth leagues and in middle school. “I always looked forward to playing against him in middle school because he was lined up at linebacker and I was lined up at tight end and I loved competing against him” said Steinfeldt.

Smith shared the same sentiments. After meeting in Ohio and the two became sort of a “duo” as Smith referred to it. After youth football, the two would go different directions and this sparked the rivalry. “Going into middle school, me and Aidan went to different schools. This created a rivalry not only on the football field but also on the basketball court. The physicality and competitiveness continued into high school to what we are today” Smith recalled. The respect level grew with each game and competition for Smith and Steinfeldt. “I always respected him as an athlete and I worked out with him a lot during the 2020 quarantine” Steinfeldt said. Smith added similar remarks, “After meeting on our travel team me and Aidan stayed friends off the field so we always knew how each other were doing and the accomplishments we made”.

Aside from the rivalry on the field, Smith and Steinfeldt cross paths on the recruiting trail. Both players have scholarship offers to play tight end at the next level. As noted earlier, Smith is also being recruited to play on the defensive side of the ball, which he said is a leg up on Steinfeldt. “I guess you could say I have the leg up on him because I am getting recruited for OLB and TE but other than that we are in the same stage of the recruiting process and we have our own different ways of training and getting noticed” said Smith. As expected, Steinfeldt claimed to be having a slightly better recruitment taking place. “I feel like being ranked as the 17th TE in the country gives me a leg up on recruiting” Steinfeldt said. The two admit to be paying attention to each other’s recruitment. Is there a possibility the two rivals end up being a “duo” in college again that started in the sixth grade? “That hasn’t been something we have spoke about yet, but as we get closer to our commitment, that conversation will get brought up at some point” Steinfeldt noted. As for Smith, there’s a possibility the two head to the same school in similar fashion as former Bloomington stars in Aaron Steinfeldt, Aidan’s older brother and South’s James Bomba. “We haven’t spoken much about it but TEs James Bomba and Aaron Steinfeldt are at Indiana University this year playing together how me and Aidan could” added Smith.

As for Friday’s contest, Aidan is ready to get on the winning side of this rivalry. North has yet to beat South in a varsity game since the two entered high school. “Since the 7th grade, the series is 2-3 in his favor” said Steinfeldt. On the other side, Smith hopes to remain in the win column after Friday. “Since I have been at South we haven’t lost to North and we are working hard to keep it that way!” exclaimed Smith. The game will be another opportunity for the two get “one up” on the other. “On the field me and Aidan can get pretty chippy especially if one of us gets a good play on the other” and with emotions running high, Smith noted “I respect Aidan but we both know when the pads go on it’s time”. It appears neither of them will leave the field much on Friday. Steinfeldt will line up as the EDGE player on defense and his normal spot on offense at tight end. On the other side, Smith will play his outside linebacker position on defense and line up at tight end on offense. “I’m looking forward to winning on reps on both sides of the ball. He’s their best defender and I’m our best blocker so they will put me on him. I will be one of our best defensive players and he will be their best blocker so they will put him on me most likely” said Steinfeldt.

Their friendship has created a unique rivalry. Beyond the field, Smith and Steinfeldt train together, accompany each other on visits and support each other’s accomplishments. On Friday, those things go to the wayside and the two will battle like old times to see who has the leg up.