Bonner Springs produces 2 all-KVL players
The two Braves most people expected to see on the all-Kaw Valley League football team wound up there when the teams were released last week.
Sophomore running back Tyler Jock and senior lineman/linebacker Emmanuel McComb were the only Bonner Springs High School players named to this year's team.
Bonner Springs coach Lew Kasselman did not expect to land too many players on this year's all-KVL team.
"When you looked at who was nominated, there were a lot of good football players in the league this year," Kasselman said. "It was a tough team to make."
Despite struggling this season, the Braves were rewarded by seeing their offensive and defensive leaders added to the team.
Jock was far and away the team's best offensive player in 2005. He became the first Braves running back since 1996 to rush for more than 1,000 yards and did it on just 142 carries.
Jock's 1,014 total yards came at an eye-popping clip of 7.1 yards per carry, ranking him among the league leaders in yards from scrimmage.
In addition to the 1,000 yards on the ground, Jock added 211 through the air, catching 18 passes for an average gain of 11.7 yards per catch.
It wasn't Jock's numbers alone that made him impressive. His blend of power, speed and finesse made him one of the best backs in the league. And the fact that he's only a sophomore likely means his brightest moments are still ahead.
"Tyler is just an incredible athlete," Bonner Springs coach Lew Kasselman said. "He just goes out there every game and makes some unbelievable plays. It doesn't matter what he has to do to get it done, he's going to do it."
Along with the all-league accolades, Jock earned the team's Most Valuable Player and Offensive Player of the Year awards.
While Jock flourished on the offense, McComb did the same on defense.
Entering the season, expectations were high for the Braves' co-captain and three-year starter, whom Kasselman said was the kind of player that could dominate defensively.
McComb played his way into a second-team all-KVL selection. He led the Braves in tackles with 110 -- 60 solo jobs and 50 assists -- and was the most feared defender the Braves had in 2005.
In addition to being the Braves' leading tackler, McComb led in fumble recoveries (2), tackles for a loss (6), blocked extra points (1) and was third on the team in sacks.
That's just the defensive side of McComb.
On offense, he was an anchor on the Braves' offensive line, paving the way for the offense to rack up more than 1,400 yards rushing.
Kasselman said he expected to see McComb's name pop up on the defensive all-league team, but added that he was pleasantly surprised to see his senior earn the recognition on both sides of the ball.
"They all know No. 70," Kasselman said. "He made plays on defense and saved us a bunch of times. That's what counts."