6A Title game Shawnee Mission East vs Hutchinson. SME is coached by Dustin Delaney who used to be an assistant coach in Hutchinson just a few short years ago. Hutchinson is coached by first year head coach Ryan Cornelsen. The Kansas media ranking team picked SME as our top team in class 6A and expected SME to win it all. Hutch was not even ranked at the conclusion of the regular season. My first thought on this game, it is a close contest.
5A Title game Bishop Carroll vs St. Thomas Aquinas. Bishop Carroll is coached by long time coach Alan Schuckman. Aquinas coach is Randy Dreiling who is in his first year at Aquinas but sent many a team to the state championship game from Hutchinson. My first thought is Bishop Carroll wins big. Check out Bishop Carroll schedule here and there isn’t a close game anywhere.
4A Division I Title game Bishop Miege vs Hayden. Bishop Miege is coached by Jon Holmes. Topeka-Hayden is coached by Bill Arnold. My first thought is both schools play in leagues with opponents that are from classes 6A and 5A. They are both used to playing schools with enrollments much larger than themselves. If anyone can give Bishop Miege a game it is Hayden. My second thought is, it is to bad we couldn’t have one more game the week after Thanksgiving week and call it the Catholic School Championship of Kansas and have the winner of 5A and 4A Division I play each other.
4A Divison II Title game Andale vs Columbus. Andale is coached by Gary O’Hair. Columbus is coached by Dan Grundy. Andale was the preseason favorite to win this classification and they have lived up to the preseason billing so far. Columbus defeated Holton in the playoffs and the Holton Wildcats were who everyone else thought would be in the finals. Columbus has been ranked all season long. This looks like a good game on paper. Guess we see how it plays out.
3A Division Title game Rossville vs Scott City. Rossville has finally won the Eastern State Championship over Silver Lake. That is quite an accomplishment for Coach Derick Hammes and the Bulldawgs. Scott City is coached by long time coach Glenn O’Neil. Both teams last weekend played really close games where either team could have won or lost. My first thought on this game is both squads will be tuned in to their coaches this week and that this game may be the most competitive of all the classifications this Saturday.
2A Title game is Ell-Saline vs Olpe. Ell-Saline is coached by long time coach Terry King. Olpe is coached by Chris Schmidt. Preseason rankings did not have Ell-Saline on the map. After the nine game regular season Ell-Saline was still not in the rankings. The Cardinals are the team that know one was thinking about on the way to the championship. Olpe has been ranked all season long. My first thought is I would have picked Ell-Saline to lose the last three games they have played, if I was a betting man. I think I will keep my money in my pocket this week and just watch to see what happens because I don’t have a clue about this one.
May all the teams play the game as violently as the rules allow and may the hitting be ferocious, and we pray that God would keep every single football player safe from serious injury. Blood and Bruises and Soreness only last a little while, but the memory of the state championship game will last a lifetime!