I follow @rivalshigh (Dallas Jackson) on Twitter. He does a fantastic job updating games and teams across the country. (And I thought my job was busy with the schools that we focus on in the area.) We chat here and there on Twitter and he is always looking for updates on Kansas schools.
On Friday night, he had a post on Rivals.com, about how Kansas missed an opportunity to earn recognition when Hutchinson and Gardner-Edgerton both lost in the Class 5A semifinals.
Is he right?
Now, being that he’s looking at things from a national perspective, he probably is right. Those not here see that Hutch lost and Gardner-Edgerton lost, and they say, oh well. Must not have been that good.
You know what I think it means? Two things — it shouldn’t have taken as long as it did for Hutchinson to be recognized nationally, and football in Kansas is stronger than those nationally might think.
Look at the programs in the two big classes playing for state titles — Olathe North, a perennial power that has turned out outstanding athletes and numerous Division I athletes; Wichita Heights, a rising power that has been consistent over the last decade or so after being an absolute nothing of a football program and it is playing in it second straight title game.
In Class 5A there’s Blue Valley, a previous champion and a consistent power, and Bishop Carroll, playing in its second title game in the past four seasons. These are not one-hit wonder programs. They are established programs and as we know, Carroll has turned out plenty of Division I talent over the years. And the teams they beat? Hutchinson is the current class of the state — and rightfully so! — and Gardner-Edgerton is a rising power with consistent winning seasons ever since Marvin Diener took it over. Bubba got them the national attention, but that program was moving in the right direction anyway.
So what do you think?