Monday, October 24, 2016

SHUKC Student Writer: Possible Change in KSHSAA Classifications

Dirk Beashore (Piper)
by Dirk Beashore, Piper Student Writer

After the last few years the Kansas State High School Activities Association and its board members have been eyeing changes to its school size classifications.

The state currently has six divisions, and schools are classified based on how many students are enrolled at the school. 6A schools have 1123-1796 students, 5A schools have 595-1092 students, 4A D1 schools have 320-590 students, 4A DII schools have 320-590 students, 3A schools have 119-203 students enrolled and 2-1A have 63-119 students enrolled.

The new proposal would make changes to almost every sport the state of Kansas offers.

For football, the change would mark the return of 1A as a separate classification. It also would get rid of the two separate 4A divisions; the 6A, 5A and 4A divisions would consist of 32 schools each. 3A and 2A divisions would have 48 schools each, and the 1A division would have the remaining schools. Eight-man football would remain the same with two divisions, with roughly 50 schools in each.
Volleyball, bowling, golf, swimming and non-sport activities would not be changed with the proposal.
However, boys’ and girls’ soccer would undergo two different changes. Boys’ soccer would be changed by having 6A and 5A divisions being made up of 36 teams. The remaining classes would all consist of 33 teams each. On the girls’ side, 6A would have 36 schools while 5A would have 35. 4A, 3A, 2A and 1A would all consist of 22 teams each.
Basketball would have some changes made as well; 6A-4A schools would consist of 36 teams each, while 3A and 2A would have 64 teams in each. 1A would have approximately 117 schools.
Baseball and softball would also see changes with the proposal. Baseball would have its 6A-4A classes consist of 36 teams each while 3A would have 59 and 2A and 1A would have 60-70 teams. Softball would have its 6A and 4A classes contain 36 teams in each, while its 5A would contain 33 or 34 teams. 2A would contain around 59 teams and 1A would consist of 60-70 teams.
The last sport that would have changes to its classes by the new proposal is cross country. 6A-4A would consist of 36 schools each, and 3A-1A would consist of up to 64 teams.
The final vote for the proposal will be in April. If the vote passes, it would be effective for the 2018-19 school year.

SHUKC Student Writer: New Look KVL

Dirk Beashore (Piper)
by Dirk Beashore, Piper Student Writer

In past years, it was a given who would win the race for the Kaw Valley League in most sports. However, Mill Valley, which was dominant over the years it was part of the Kaw Valley League, has decided to make a change. As of this year, they will be a part of the Eastern Kansas League.
The EKL is arguably the best high school football conference in Kansas. According to Maxpreps state rankings the EKL includes the two of the three best teams in the state: Blue Valley (1) and Bishop Miege (3). The conference also has two more representatives in the top 10: St. Thomas Aquinas (5) and Blue Valley North (6).
With the move, the KVL will now be more competitive for its conference champion in every sport. For football, the league race has four teams within three games off the top spot. Basehor-Linwood, however, has come out as the favorite, throttling their opponents with an average of 53 points.
Since the league is still up for grabs, it gives the teams that are good enough to win it, but were unable to get past Mill Valley, a chance to take the top spot in the league.
Sports Highlights Unlimited Kansas City writer David Brox said he thinks the Piper girls’ basketball team has a good chance to win the league.
“Coach Stout does a great job, and not having Mill Valley in the league clears a big hurdle for them winning again,” Brox said.
When it comes to boys’ basketball, the league title could go to any of the teams. Brox said he thinks that it could be a three-team battle in the end.
“(Piper) could threaten in the KVL but have a big hurdle to clear against Basehor-Linwood, and don’t sleep on Bonner Springs,” Brox said.
Brox said he thinks the Pirates’ new coach Bryan Shelley has what it takes to help them take it to next level.
Mill Valley will have more quality opponents, and the Kaw Valley League is open to everyone in it now. The overall quality of both leagues has increased as well due to the newly heightened sense of competition.

SHUKC Player Spotlight: Devan Graham (Tonganoxie)

by David Brox, davidbrox@shukc.com

I had some good conversation with Tonganoxie players about their win against Atchison.  Out of that I got a message from Devan Graham who is a tackling machine this year for the Chieftains.  Graham is among tackle leaders in our area with 86 tackles, 1 sack, 1 TFL and a fumble recovery.  You will see in his film below that he is a hard hitting linebacker, good instincts, reactions against misdirection plays and able to shed blocks to make plays.  At 6'0 200 lbs he has the look of a safety at the next level but I really enjoyed watching his film.  Graham put this highlight together and obviously spends some time in the film room which is always a bonus.

This is a must watch for college coaches as Graham definitely has a motor.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Football Week 8 Scores

Chas Rollo (Basehor-Linwood)

by David Brox, davidbrox@shukc.com

I have traveled to Atchison a few times for basketball games but realized that I had never gone for a football game.  I got a chance to ride up with a good friend of mine which made the idea a good one.  I was a bit worried when I arrived to see Atchison's QB Adam Smith in street cloths.  If the tall task of beating Basehor to keep your playoff hopes alive wasn't enough, doing so without your best passer and one of your best runners was 5 times tougher.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

SHUKC Player Spotlight: Aaron Hawes (Piper)

by David Brox, davidbrox@shukc.com

When you have a 1000 yard running back you have to take a moment and thank the big guys up front.  At 6'3 277 lbs Aaron Hawes will show you in the highlight how he has helped make that possible.  I am guilty of this more than anyone grabbing hold of the flashy numbers and fancy runs but football at its roots is won in the pits.  Hawes shows you good ability to pull and get out in front to get blocks downfield and in some cases hustling down the field.

We don't know about players like J'Veyon Browning without TJ Wallace is one of the most glaring examples I can come up with.  Emmitt Smith didn't get those yards because he was the best running back in history.  It was because the big guys up front were dominant.  JJ Letcher has benefited from the play of Hawes and hopefully has bought him some donuts.

Check out the 2016 highlights of Aaron Hawes of Piper.

SHUKC Game Previews: Week 8

by David Brox, davidbrox@shukc.com

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I am really a fan of district play which creates a win or go home type atmosphere.  It creates 2 very intriguing games.

Basehor-Linwood vs Atchison

It is do or die for Atchison, at least that is how they will have to approach the matchup with the Bobcats.  Basehor-Linwood was incredibly sloppy against Piper but were able to pull away late in the game.  Coach Stallbaumer should have little problems getting his team focused heading on the road this week.  If they head up to Atchison and turn the ball over as they did last week against a desperate opponent then that could cause a problem. 

The most impressive thing about the Basehor win was they were down by 14 and reclaimed the lead and then trailed incredibly late in the game and answered immediately.  They have playmakers and most importantly belief that they can make plays.

It will be interesting to see how Atchison comes out.  It would be easy to be completely deflated after an OT loss against Tonganoxie.  There are a lot of seniors on that team and hopefully they respond well at home.  They have a tough task for sure needing wins against Piper and Basehor but you have to believe.

Tonganoxie vs Piper

Piper now has their backs firmly against the wall again this year.  They responded well last year to make the playoffs but talk about living on the edge.  The question we will need to answer about Piper is if Basehor played bad or if Piper forced them into that performance.  If the latter then we Tonganoxie has a problem.  Piper's offense funnels through JJ Letcher and I really like the little tactic coach Brindle has implemented in his play calling.  Yes everyone knows they want to get the ball in Letcher's hands.  What he is doing is huddling and then running to the line to create imbalances in the line by running the play quick. 

Tonganoxie has to push aside the win against Atchison.  It is over and have to figure out how to get 1 more.  The move to sit a few key players against Turner looks like a gold star move by the coaches.  Can the Chieftains knock off one more giant?

Schlagle vs Harmon

Schlagle is playing to maintain their high seed in the playoffs.  If they are able to secure an early lead I wouldn't expect to see the starters playing much.  We will obviously keep our eyes on Neil Ruff as he pursues his march to 2000 yards.

Gardener-Edgerton vs Mill Valley

Mill Valley has gone into a bit of a tail spin after an early fast start.  They face a 3-4 Gardner team that they would like to start gaining some momentum heading into the post season.

Wyandotte vs Turner

Wyandotte got a win last week against Sumner and will look to wrap up the regular season with a win against KVL's Turner.  Turner who got a late season win against Tonganoxie but failed to follow that up against Lansing.  Not a lot on the line in this one other than pride.  Happy to see Turner put another KCK school on the schedule.

Prairie View vs Bishop Ward

Second game of districts for Ward.  Not really a lot to say here as Ward closes out this season.

Sumner Academy vs Washington

Washington going for 3 in a row.  I would guess no one outside that locker room thought we would be saying that.  Happy to see some success for Washington as I have gotten a few highlights from the players there.  There are some athletes on the team for sure and seeing that come together is awesome. 

Bonner Springs vs Lansing

Both of these teams have fallen off towards the end of the season despite Lansing winning against Turner.  They were no doubt a bit deflated losing to Tonganoxie and then smacked good by Basehor-Linwood.  These teams are playing for cellar dweller status.

SHUKC Petition Data: State Title Statistics

by David Brox, davidbrox@shukc.com

My simple mind only looks at football and basketball but it gets deep in other sports where one opponent of this conversation are barely competing.

These number no doubt are more defined now.  Hell even Ward has more state titles than a lot of public schools.