Line play crucial for PC West
With several returning players in the offensive and defensive backfields, Putnam City West's progress this season will be measured by the development of their offensive and defensive lines.
The offensive front lost some crucial pieces to graduation, but players like Zac Yarber, Tyler Loudenback and Bryson Bingman are experienced blockers for quarterback Ray Young and his returning group of receivers.
The defensive line will rely on returning starters Grayson Buchanon and Cameron Sisco.
"Defensively, we're breaking in a whole lot of new players," coach John Jensen said. "We're changing to a 4-3 scheme from a 4-4, so we're changing some things, and there's a lot of learning going on with that."
Rewriting the record book
Shawnee quarterback Brayle Brown already owns all the passing records for the Wolves. Now the question is just how far will he extend them.
Brown passed for 2,688 yards and 31 touchdowns a year ago. He also ran for 894 yards and accounted for a total of 42 touchdowns. In his career, the 6-3, 190-pounder has thrown for 5,164 yards and 65 scores.
The senior will likely face stronger opposition this season as Shawnee makes its Class 6A debut. The Wolves were 11-1 in 5A last season.
Southmoore rebuilding O-line
For only having four returning starters on offense, Southmoore still feels pretty good about its chances. That's primarily because two of the starters — quarterback Kendal Thompson and running back Andrew Long — are two of the top players in the state at their positions. Still, those two will obviously need some blocking, and that's where the SaberCats are breaking in several newcomers.
Connor Thompson and JP Hendrick have starting experience, although neither are that big. Connor Thompson goes 5-10, 226 and Hendrick goes 5-11, 222. However, big things are expected out of Lucas Stalnaker, who stands 6-4 and weighs in at 285 pounds.
District 6A-3 coaches' poll 1. Jenks (13-1) 2. Broken Arrow (10-3) 3. Southmoore (11-2) 4. Muskogee (3-6) 5. Norman (4-6) 6. Shawnee (11-1) 7. Sapulpa (1-9) 8. Putnam City West (0-10) 2009 record in parentheses