View From the Press Box: Dion Clisso 11/24
By Dion Clisso PrepsKC Managing Editor
We’ve reached the point in the season where we finally get to find out just how football here in the Metro and surrounding areas matches up with the rest of the teams in Kansas and Missouri.
Early on I thought the Kansas side of the state line had a good chance to be dominant and bring home multiple state titles. Not only is that true it looks like there could be a sweep of the top three classes.
On the Missouri side things looked up in the air for most of the season. Class 5 was strong and deep but last year showed you never know what can happen when you get into the postseason. Class 6 was also wide open and with Blue Springs South going it alone in another district there was no guarantee the Jaguars could make it all the way to the state title game. Class 4 had several strong teams led by Kearney and Harrisonville but the road had traditionally gone through Webb City so that seemed like a tough task as well. Class 3 had seen a champion in Oak Grove last year but at midseason no dominant team had emerged. Class 1 and Class 2 had some good teams from areas around the Metro but depending on the bracket they could run into multiple defending state champs.
So as the postseason began there were a lot of question marks. There were plenty of good and maybe even great teams but bracket play in any sport can see just about anything happen.
Well here we are just a few days from the state championship games and it looks like yet another year of Kansas City dominance. The Metro should be favored to see Bishop Miege (4A-I), Mill Valley (5A) and Blue Valley (6A) all bring home state titles.
The Missouri side boasts and undefeated and dominant Blue Springs South looking for its third title in the last 10 years, a powerhouse in Fort Osage going for its first championship in its third trip in six years, a Kearney squad playing its best football matching up with Webb City and an Odessa team that has become the dominant force in Class 3.
All four of those have a chance to bring home titles. Kearny faces the toughest task but the Bulldogs were the last team to beat Webb City in the playoffs back in 2009. It won’t be easy but Kearney has the pedigree and the talent to end the Cardinals streak.
The other three are favorites if you ask me. Fort Osage easily dispatched Park Hill and Battle in the last two weeks and their experience and talent could turn the Class 5 title game into a rout.
Odessa’s defense and running game are the exact formula that has led to titles in Class 3 the last three years. This team led by tailback Kobe Hardin could have similar results against John Burroughs that Oak Grove and Aaron Graham had last year.
Blue Springs South goes in undefeated facing an undefeated defending champ in CBC. If you just go off history with these two teams the Jaguars will win. They have met twice before in the 2006 and 2011 state title games with South winning both times. This year’s CBC is supposed to be unbeatable. I heard similar things about a Francis Howell defense and Kirkwood’s athletes. South beat those teams by a combined 87-45 margin. In fact Howell had only give up 56 points all season before surrendering 46 to the Jaguars.
It should be a great year. Good luck to all of the Metro teams.
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