Kansas All-Stars on the offensive

Dion Clisso/PrepsKC

By Dion Clisso PrepsKC Managing Editor
Posted: June 16, 2010 - 2:29 PM



Playmakers will not be in short supply for the Kansas All-Star team. When Kansas takes the field 7 p.m. Thursday at Shawnee Mission North it will be with some of the most explosive players in the Metro the last few years.

Kansas features talented players at almost every position and will showcase a backfield led by Simone award winner James Franklin of Olathe North along with do everything quarterback Camren Torneden of Lawrence Free State.

The pair will finally team up after spending their entire high school careers doing battle in the Sunflower league.

“It’s going to be great.” Torneden said “It will be a lot of fun to see how they react. It’s a lot like me and Chucky from Free State.

“We want our defense to stop the ball and the offense to make things happen.”

Torneden led the Firebirds to the 6A state title game in 2008 while Franklin helped the Eagles to the 6A state championship the next year. The pair has been wreaking havoc on the Kansas side of the state line but now will try to run over and past the Missouri defenses.

Franklin is excited to bring their rivalry to the same team.

“It is definitely fun we’ve always had a little rivalry going between us talking after the game,” Franklin said. “It’s fun to be in the same backfield because we are kind of alike. We both have the same style. It is fun to watch him do his thing and then he makes comment when I get done.”

This high powered offense could give Missouri some fits Thursday night. At the same time the athletes playing quarterback for Missouri in Raytown South’s Dennis Tanner, Fort Osage’s Edward Pearl and Hickman Mills Jerrin Walton could also be huge factors in the game.

With all of these talented offensive players Kansas and Free State head coach Bob Lisher feels like the scoreboard might light up Thursday at Shawnee Mission North.

“From what I understand Missouri’s got a lot of them we have a few, but every time I think it’s going to be an offensive game it turns into a defensive game,” Lisher said. “That’s the great thing about football, it’s a team sport and you never know how it’s going to pan out.

“I would say offensively both teams are fairly strong. Defensively we are coming on but with the athletes each team has offensively I think it should be somewhat of an entertaining game.”

If it turns out to be a track meet it would be very different than the last few seasons. Missouri won 10-7 last year and it’s been five years since either team has scored more than 30 points in a game and the two teams haven’t even combined for 30 points in that stretch.

Dion Clisso is the Managing Editor of PrepsKC. To reach him send e-mail to dion@prepskc.com.