Well, believe it or not we’ve made it about 2/3 of the way through the football season on the Missouri side with only a few COVID-related missteps along the way.
I’ve got my fingers crossed that we can get this season across the finish line. As we head into Week 7, here are a few things that have caught my eye so far.
Grain Valley is the real deal in Class 5. I don’t think this is any sort of shocking revelation, as the Eagles are 6-0 and ranked No. 4 in Class 5, but the Eagles aren’t exactly mainstays in the state rankings. But don’t let that fool you.
Led by talented quarterback Cole Keller and an experienced group of seniors, the Grain Valley offense has been about as consistent as they come, scoring 34-38 points in every game. They’ve only played one game they haven’t won by double digits.
After talking with Keller a couple of weeks ago after a win over Kearney, I got the impression this is a season that lots of players and coaches have been waiting for. This senior class is ready to do something special.
Which brings me to my next topic, which is just Class 5 in general and how loaded it is. It’s not going to be easy for the Eagles. In fact, two of their last three games are against Raytown and Belton, teams that won’t be a push-over.
In fact, the Pirates are one of the surprises of the season. After going 0-10 last season, they are sitting at 5-0 and just entered the state rankings at No 9. What a story. That clash with Grain Valley on October 23 could be a game to see who remains undefeated.
Elsewhere in Class 5, Platte County and North Kansas City will surely have a say in things. The Pirates are 5-1 and ranked No. 6, while the Hornets are 4-2 and tied with Belton at the No. 9 spot.
Throw in Raytown and Staley, whose records don’t look as sparkling due to difficult schedules so far, the Class 5 playoffs will be a gauntlet.
Unsurprisingly, Class 6 should be the same. Along with Belton, the surprise team of the season might be Liberty.
The Blue Jays went 4-6 a season ago and a year later find themselves at 6-0 and ranked No. 1 in Class 6. Quite the turnaround. I saw them play in Week 1 against a young Blue Springs team, and while they dominated the Wildcats, I wasn’t sure what to make of them due to Blue Springs’ inexperience.
But now, six weeks in, it’s hard to deny how good the Blue Jays have been with additional wins over Liberty North, Lee’s Summit North and Lee’s Summit West. Their game against Ray-Pec in a couple of weeks should be a dandy.
Liberty doesn’t hide what they like to do. They’re going to give the ball to Wentric Williams III and let him and the big boys up front go to work.
Williams III has 15 rushing touchdowns and has been held under 150 rushing yards in one game so far this season. If you want to slow down the Blue Jays, you better start by slowing down Williams III.
Elsewhere in Class 6, Lee’s Summit West, Ray-Pec and Rockhurst find themselves right in the mix, too. Those three schools come into Week 7 ranked Nos. 4, 5 and 6, respectively. There should be no shortage of drama in the coming weeks.
Lastly, I saw the Blue Springs School District is dropped its lawsuit against the Jackson County Health Department after the county came out Monday with new guidelines for outdoor events.
I feel like I am in the minority in thinking the lawsuit by the district was a bad look, especially after the district flat-out ignored the county’s guidelines in its Week 1 game at Blue Springs High School with a reported 400+ people in attendance, many more than the 100 limit.
That being said, I’m happy the two sides came to an agreement with the new proposed protocols that will allow 20 percent capacity or about 1,000 people in attendance. I don’t blame the county for being extra cautious with its guidelines. And while I didn’t love the lawsuit being filed, I understand the district wanting more parents and fans to get a chance to see games in person, if done safely.
Both sides want the same thing – for this season to finish without any issues. Let’s hope the new guidelines can continue to help that goal get achieved.