Kansas.com KSN

by joanna

I follow @rivalshigh (Dallas Jackson) on Twitter. He does a fantastic job updating games and teams across the country. (And I thought my job was busy with the schools that we focus on in the area.) We chat here and there on Twitter and he is always looking for updates on Kansas schools.

On Friday night, he had a post on Rivals.com, about how Kansas missed an opportunity to earn recognition when Hutchinson and Gardner-Edgerton both lost in the Class 5A semifinals.

Is he right?

Now, being that he’s looking at things from a national perspective, he probably is right. Those not here see that Hutch lost and Gardner-Edgerton lost, and they say, oh well. Must not have been that good.

You know what I think it means? Two things — it shouldn’t have taken as long as it did for Hutchinson to be recognized nationally, and football in Kansas is stronger than those nationally might think.

Look at the programs in the two big classes playing for state titles — Olathe North, a perennial power that has turned out outstanding athletes and numerous Division I athletes; Wichita Heights, a rising power that has been consistent over the last decade or so after being an absolute nothing of a football program and it is playing in it second straight title game.

In Class 5A there’s Blue Valley, a previous champion and a consistent power, and Bishop Carroll, playing in its second title game in the past four seasons. These are not one-hit wonder programs. They are established programs and as we know, Carroll has turned out plenty of Division I talent over the years. And the teams they beat? Hutchinson is the current class of the state — and rightfully so! — and Gardner-Edgerton is a rising power with consistent winning seasons ever since Marvin Diener took it over. Bubba got them the national attention, but that program was moving in the right direction anyway.

So what do you think?

  • respectksfb

    As far as teams getting exposure we have had games on espn network and in regards to recruiting were Kansas was a “passover” for years, there has been much more “coach” traffic from D-1 and D1AA in this state and especially in this greater Wichita area now more than ever. You asked the question in your article “Five Card Studs” in August 2007 if there was going to be a carry over from what the J. Bird, C. Harper, B. Foltz and the two Browns recruiting momentum started. I would say yes, even if the Hutch and Gardner-Edgerton fall was untimely, IMO the momentum that’s been built will continue.

  • Prepfbfan17

    I think that as far as national recognition goes, it definitely hurts with those two high profile teams going down. It hurts with recognition this year and with recognition at the beginning of next year. It takes a high profile dominate program like Hutch and like Olathe North from the late 90’s to put a state on the national map. For that state to rise even higher those dominate programs need to play dominate programs from other states much like Hutch has done with Rockhurst. There has been a number of dominate programs like Hutch that have risen the profile of the entire state that they come from. Such as Independence in North Carolina, Don Bosco Prep in New Jersey, Bingham in Utah. I grew up in Kansas and played my high school ball there. I love Kansas high school football and I follow it every year from beginning to end and attend games there as often as I can even though I’ve lived in Dallas/Fort Worth for the last 15 years. I also watch at least 10 games a year in the DFW metroplex and another three or four across the state of Texas during the playoffs. Over the last 5 years with the trend of all the interstate match ups in high school football I’ve also witnessed some of the very best programs play from Florida, Ohio, Louisiana, Arkansas, Pennsylvania, Utah, and Georgia. I think what has to be established first when trying to determine where teams really stand on the national level you have to understand the sheer size of the enrollments of the top schools (especially Florida, Texas, and Cali), the amount of money that goes into the backing of the school’s athletic programs (especially in Texas), and the unbelievable depth of the competition that some of the top teams compete against on a weekly basis (Greater Catholic League – Cincinnati, South Coast League- Orange Co. Cali, 5A District 8 – North of Dallas). Almost no team from Kansas would have a large enough enrollment to compete in Texas 5A (2100 – 6100 students), Florida 6A or 5A (2000 – 5000), or Southern California Division 1 (2000 and up). Wichita East and Derby might make the cut with 2100 students. I believe that enrollment alone doesn’t guarantee a dominate football program. It is shone every year in Texas and Florida when a school with 2500 students like Southlake beats a school with 5000+ like Plano. But can you imagine the unbelievable depth a team like Allen, Texas or Miami Northwestern has with D1 athletes riding the bench waiting for their turn. I think that maybe even more important than enrollment is money. All of the large suburban programs around DFW and Houston likely have the most money. All of them have enough money to have at least 50 yard indoor practice facilities, ridiculous weight rooms, strength coaches, as many as ten position coaches, and year round 7 on 7 programs. Combine all that with an enrollment of 2500 – 6000 with competition that has all the same amenities as you and you can see why teams from California, Texas, and Florida are often at the top. I do think that the top Kansas programs would be very competitive in their respective divisions. For example Hutch, Heights, or Olathe North would do very well in Texas 4A, Florida 3A, or the smaller California Divisions. I believe the facts hold true for teams from other smaller states like Rockhurst (Missouri), Mullen (Denver), Bingham (Utah), Shiloh Christian (Arkansas), Phoebus (Virginia). They’re all exceptional programs with great athletes and long traditions but on the national scene it’s a tough sell to me to put them near in the top 10.

  • hawkdad

    Hutch will be back next year reloaded and looking at a schedule that will potentially contain 2 state champions (Rockhurst class 6 MO and BC class 5A KS). It’s still hard to deal with the fact 2010/11 season is done, but 2011/12 is already in the works. It was very rough for the 17 seniors( my son included) to be the ones to break the streak, but the rest of the boys have vowed to work even harder to make sure they are still playing Nov.26,2011.

  • Ya know

    I heard the Hutch basketball team wanted to practice at 6am the week after Hutch got beat out but Dreiling wouldn’t give up the gym.

  • TFL


    Does your computer have an “Enter” button?

    If so, you might want to use it a bit…you know, that whole paragraph thing…


  • Prepfbfan17


    What? Do want to be my writing coach? It’s a blog buddy! Don’t be a blog Nazi!

    Does your computer allow you to actually add to the conversation?

    If so, you might want to use it a bit..you know instead of being a douche..


  • ???

    You added to the conversation? Reading that just added to my headache. Just because it is a blog, does not mean you have to write like a moron.