The Wichita Eagle and VarsityKansas gear up for the 2011 high school football season by presenting in-depth previews for 30 area teams.
“It was a big deal for the school to go to the playoffs for the first time. Again, that’s one of our goals, but we hope to make it in more convincing fashion.”
AT A GLANCE
Last season: 3-7, reached first round of Class 3A playoffs
Last five seasons: 15-31
Projected 2011 playoff team? No
BEST SKILL PLAYERS
Tre Williams 5-7 155 WR Jr.Kevin Jarvis 6-1 190 TE Jr.Karson Rowe 5-9 170 RB So.Casey Kolbeck 5-10 140 RB Jr.Matt Loveland 6-2 185 DB Sr.Lueke Anderson 5-10 180 LB Jr.
Matt Medrano 6-2 235 OL-DL Jr.
LUEKE ANDERSON ON HIS TEAM
What Independent does well: “We have good skill players. We have above-average skill. We have a good quarterback and good receivers.”
What has to improve: “We could improve on our (roster) size, we need to get more kids out. Right now we’re only at a maximum of 30 players, and having more people would make everybody better.”
Sept. 2 at Medicine Lodge 7 p.m. L,20-16Sept. 9 at Chaparral 7 p.m. L,44-21Sept. 16 Conway Springs 7 p.m. L,69-0Sept. 23 at Trinity Academy 7 p.m. L,55-7Sept. 30 Garden Plain 7 p.m. L,70-13Oct. 7 at Bluestem 7 p.m. W,32-28Oct. 14 Douglass 7 p.m. W,14-6Oct. 21 at Collegiate 7 p.m. L,71-0Oct. 27 Belle Plaine 7 p.m. W,13-12
Even though they were outscored by 62 points in three district games, the Panthers advanced to the playoffs for the first time, putting a pleasant ending on an otherwise difficult season. With several juniors playing key roles, Independent could be a year away from being able to make a deeper dent in the postseason, but Hibler hopes the Panthers can build on their late-season success.
Another playoff trip might hinge on the play of an unproven offensive line, which returns one starter. Matt Loveland will likely be the full-time quarterback after spending limited time there in 2010. He’ll likely look to running backs Rowe and Kolbeck to ease him into more playing time, and Loveland has a safety net in the passing game in Jarvis.
- Jeffrey Lutz