Sideline Pass: Jim Bradford 1/7

Jim Bradford

By Jim Bradford PrepsKC Senior Writer
Posted: January 7, 2014 - 11:32 AM

It’s a new year. That means new, well, everything.
New adventures await. New challenges lie ahead. New memories to be made.
While we are much closer to the end of last year’s high school football season, the new  season will be here before you know it — even if it’s still more than nine months away.
So, one of the first thing that everyone wants to know when the season begins is which team will it be.
On the Missouri side, when the big schools lace them up, it all revolves around Rockhurst and a couple of those team from Blue Springs.
On the Kansas side, it’s not that easy or at least it hasn’t been over the past few years.
Over the past few years, the eastern side of the state has been sending a new team to the state championship game, which a far cry from the previous couple of decades. From 1986 to 1995 it was Lawrence making the trip. From 1996 through 2003, it was Olathe North for all but one season.
Since then, only one team has made back-to-back trips to the title game (Olathe North in 2009 and 2010). Olathe South, Olathe East, Free State, Shawnee Mission West and Shawnee Mission East have all made trips to the title game over the past decade.
The Lancers surprising run to the title game this past fall was the fourth different tea in a row to make the trip and the last three (Olathe South, Shawnee Mission West and Shawnee Mission East) all came from relative anonymity to the title game.
Not that they weren’t very talented and worthy teams, but you’d be lying of you said you called the last three state title game participants from this side of the state.
So, back to what everyone wants to know. Who is this year’s 6A stalwart?
Could it be Shawnee Mission East again? Maybe Olathe North is back in the fold with a veteran team. Or maybe it’s Free State with a stable of studs back in 2014.
We’ve got nine months to wait to see everyone hit the field to start to get that question answered.
I can’t wait.