After Further Review: Cole Young 1/1

Cole Young

By Cole Young PrepsKC Senior Writer
Posted: January 4, 2016 - 9:17 AM

With another year in the books there is a lot that everyone will remember. 

The impressive season by Blue Springs South on its way to another Class 6 title. Fort Osage finally getting over the hump to win a title and Kearney pulling off a heart stopping win in the finals against Webb City. 

Everyone will think back on those moments, but what makes football so great is everyone will have their other memories of the season. 

With that, I wanted to include some of the ones that will stick in my mind. 

The Coaches
The departure of some of the area’s top coaches. I still remember my first meeting with Fred Bouchard. It was a Monday night in August of 2006. I was in the midst of going to 25 or so high school football practices and frankly most of them seemed pretty much the same. What stood out to me when I showed up at Harrisonville was how much Bouchard ran things like the college programs I had been around, especially like Mel Tjeerdsma at Northwest Missouri State.

Coach Bouchard let his assistants do the majority of the coaching. So much so that I think we may have actually done the season preview interview during practice rather than waiting until every last drill was completed.

It was the same summer that I met Jeff Gourley while he was coaching at Belton. The Pirates had some good success under him before he headed off to Olathe South. While I covered just one game of his at South, he became one of my favorite follows on twitter.

The Players
The big award winners will be the players that get mentioned for years to come and for good reason.

That said, two players I’ll remember from this year or A.J. Taylor from Rockhurst and James Sappington from Ray-Pec.

Taylor is the kind of guy who will go on to do big things at Wisconsin. Arguably the most talented player in the city, he has the kind of motor that could put him on a trajectory to big things.

Sappington hadn’t really been on my radar entering the season. I recognized the name from his junior year but in the season opener against Belton, the Ray-Pec senior made a splash, burying a 49-yard field goal with more than 10 yards to spare. While part of game was slowed by a hand injury, he proved that he may be one of the best kickers the area has seen in several years.

The Future
When Blue Springs goes on to get back to the state championship game in the next couple years, we’ll all look back at this year as the season that got things started.

The Wildcats finished the year at 6-6, but consider this. They won five of their last six games, getting better each week.

Maybe the moment we all should have looked back on is one of their early losses, a 27-24 loss to Blue Springs South. By the way, that’s the closest game South, the undefeated Class 6 champions, had all year.

There’s plenty of other things that will stick in my mind, both good, like the World Series and the way both teams cheered when Royals scores were announced during the playoff run and bad like the tornado that hit Cass-Midway before a game against Drexel.

It’s been a memorable year around the metro.