Sports in Kansas is pleased to announce its Sports in Kansas Offensive Player of the Year & Defensive Player of the Year from 6A to Six-Man. SIK also has selected an All-Classes Coach of the Year and Classification Coaches of the Year on another feature coming out. Selections made through votes from a statewide panel of media who regularly cover high school football and represents all areas and classes. This year, over 20 media members were part of the committee with Chet Kuplen of Sports in Kansas and Conor Nicholl of Sports in Kansas calculating the votes and the final selections. Input was also gathered from coaches, observations and statistics.
Class Eight-Man, Division I Offensive Player of the Year: Jayden Garrison, Little River, QB/All-Purpose
Little River senior Jayden Garrison capped a highly impressive two-year career with an incredible state championship performance in a 70-58 win versus Leoti-Wichita County. It marked the highest-scoring eight-man state championship game in Kansas annals. Overall, Garrison completed 37 of 58 passes for 721 yards with 13 touchdowns against zero interceptions. Garrison delivered 165 rushes for 1,677 yards and 37 rushing scores. He also caught 14 passes for 281 yards and eight TDs. As well, Garrison served as the team’s primary returner and delivered 2,480 all-purpose yards. He returned two punts and one kick for scores. Garrison scored 306 total points.
In the state finale, Garrison became the first player in a Kansas state championship game to score via rush and reception and pass for a score, according to KSHSAA/historian Brett Marshall. Garrison completed 4 of 4 passes for 64 yards and a TD. He rushed 28 times for 200 yards and four scores and caught a pair of passes for 56 yards with a TD. Garrison rushed for at least 197 yards in the last four games. Garrison is the reigning 1A Boys’ Basketball Player of the Year. Little River basketball is ranked No. 1 in Class 1A, Division I. Garrison had participated in cross country his first two seasons before he came out for football.
Your talent is God given and we've been blessed to see you display it. Congrats on your 8M-I POY honor from Sports in Kansas. We are so proud of you!- Love, Dad, Mom, Jace, and Jaren, Grandma and Papa Clark, Grandma and Grandpa Cunningham and Grandma and Poppy Garrison
Little River Booster Club would like to congratulate Jayden Garrison on the 8M-I Player of the Year from SIK. We are proud of you and the Redkins on winning the state championship. Congrats to all of our athletes and coaches this fall! Awesome job!
Class Co-Eight-Man, Division I Defensive Player of the Year: Manny Chavez, Leoti-Wichita County/Hunter Engle, Madison; both DEs
Madison senior end Hunter Engle entered 2020 as one of eight-man’s top players and most decorated names. Engle had tallied 169 career tackles and achieved back-to-back all-state recognition on some level the last two years. In his sophomore and junior seasons, Engle combined for 12 sacks. Leoti-Wichita County senior end Manny Chavez was a virtual unknown. He grew up in Leoti, transferred to nearby Tribune-Greeley County, and then returned to the Indians before his junior year.
Chavez, known for his constant energy and charisma, missed last season because of transfer rules. WC went 10-2 and reached the state semifinals. This season, Chavez and RB/LB Jesse Gardner were the lone two-way starters on a depth-laden squad that finished 12-1 and advanced to the first state championship game in school annals. Leoti faced a highly difficult schedule. Teams won 73 percent of its games when not playing the Indians. Leoti’s district combined for one district loss.
Madison finished 11-1 with its second straight semifinal showing. Both teams lost to Little River in the playoffs. The 5-foot-11, 197-pound Engle finished with 57 total tackles, 14 for loss, five sacks, three forced fumbles and four pass breakups. Madison’s defense, known for turnover creation with coach Alex McMillian, forced 31 turnovers in 12 contests, at least one in every game. Madison’s defense permitted 3.3 yards per play and allowed 10 touchdown passes against 20 interceptions. Engle has delivered 51 carries for 682 yards and 21 scores.
He caught 14 passes for 243 yards and four scores. Engle has offers from Highland, and Coffeyville, along with NAIAs Bethel, Ottawa and Sterling. He was first team all-league defensive end the last three seasons after second team all-league defensive end as a freshman.
WC coach Brant Douglas called Chavez the team’s defensive leader. Madison allowed 11.8 points per game, Wichita County with 13.2 permitted. WC won 11 straight by the 45-point margin. The 6-foot-2, 220-pound Chavez had 48 tackles and led the Indians with 22 tackles for loss and 12 sacks. Chavez defended seven passes, forced three fumbles and recovered three fumbles, all team-highs. He delivered two defensive TDs.
This marked Chavez’s lone season on varsity. Chavez, named to SIK’s midseason all-underrated team, emerged as a star. One of 2020’s best individual stories, he has picked up offers from NAIAs Tabor, Bethel and Ottawa, along with Garden City and Dodge City Community Colleges. He has posted 460 in squat, 310 in bench and 285 in clean.
Engle Farms would like to congratulate Hunter Engle on the 8M-I DPOY from Sports in Kansas. We are proud of you! Congrats to the Bulldogs on a fine football season!
Congratulations to Manuel Chavez, 2020 Defensive Player of the Year 8M-I! His off-season commitments, his leadership role, and his uncanny ability to always make the "big play" helped the Wichita County Indians to their first ever state title game. Western State Bank, www.wsbks.com, is committed to supporting our schools and its students in any way we can, and we are especially honored to take part in recognizing Manny for his hard work, dedication and leadership this year!
Sports in Kansas 8M-I Offensive Player of the Year Finalists
Kayde Ritezke, Leoti-Wichita Co. Sr. QB
Aaron Skidmore, South Gray Sr. ATH/QB
Sheldon Whalen, Leoti-Wichit Co. Sr. TE
Jayden Garrison, Little River Sr. ATH/QB
Tyson Struber, Canton-Galva Jr. WR
Hunter Engle, Madison Sr. FB
Sports in Kansas 8M-I Defensive Player of the Year Finalists
Manny Chavez, Leoti-Wichita Co. Sr. DE
Hunter Engle, Madison Sr. DE
Brome Rayburn, Madison Sr. DB
Tyson Struber, Canton-Galva Jr. DB
Harlan Obioha, Hoxie Sr. DL
Graham Stephens, Little River Sr. LB/K
photo: Everett Royer (Garrison), Chavez photo: Rachel Sebastian - Mira3Photography
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