Back by demand, the 11 in 11 football position rankings!
CatchitKansas ranks the top 11 players by position in Kansas every Friday until the first week of high school football.
This week is Wide Receivers & Tight Ends:
1] Jaxson Reynolds – Wichita Northwest 6’0 170 lbs senior – Wichita’s top returning wide-out as Austin Anderson’s go-to receiver for the 2017 season. Reynolds is coming off a season where he had 42 catches for 715 yards and five touchdowns. He runs a deep route that makes it easy for his quarterback to hit him right over the shoulder and makes good route adjustments on hitches, slants, and post routes. Reynolds is also an affective runner with the ball on jet sweeps and he has very quick feet.
2] Michael Littleton – Derby 6’4” 210 lbs senior WR/TE – The Panthers have been blessed with big receivers over the last five seasons like DeAndre Goolsby, Kenyon Tabor, and Littleton. The Panther’s top returning threat in the passing game balances the Derby passing game with his ability to get open while defenses focus on the outside receivers. Among all the talented receivers the Panthers had in 2016, Littleton recorded 38 receptions for 602 yards for eight touchdowns as a junior. Derby’s passing game punishes defenses who don’t respect all four receivers in the formation. Littleton’s downfield blocking is an important piece to the running game.
3] Dalton Smyres – Buhler 6’5” 205 lbs senior – The Crusader’s high-powered offense was balanced between Smyres and Dalton Brown who each posed a threat in their phases of the game. Last fall, Smyres caught 35 balls for 850 yards and 11 touchdowns on the way to a state runner-up finish for Buhler. He proved hard to defend not only with his size, but route running and eager attitude to get the maximum amount of yards possible on each play.
4] Owen Beason – Goddard 6’2” 185 lbs senior WR/TE – Whether he’s bursting out of a three-point stance or split out wide, Beason does everything he can to get open and make a play. He is not afraid to fully lay out on a dive to catch the football and slide into the endzone like he did in the Class 5A Sub-State game at Great Bend last year. Speaking of 2016, Beason recorded 26 catches for 456 yards and eight touchdowns.
5] Bryant Mocaby – Goddard 6’5” 185 lbs senior – Mocaby and Beason are the dynamic duo of the Goddard passing game. When he isn’t dominating on the basketball court, Mocaby is a standout wide receiver for the Lions. His size makes him a big target for Blake Sullivan. Mocaby made 30 catches for 396 yards and eight touchdowns as a junior.
6] Clay Cundiff – Bishop Carroll 6’4” 220 lbs junior TE – Cundiff is a solid tight end who is among the state’s top returning players. He holds a scholarship offer to play NCAA Division I football from the University of Kansas. Cundiff caught 20 passes for 272 yards with five touchdowns.
7] Cameron Cox – Hesston 5’10 170 lbs junior – Bringing Cameron Cox into the offense as a sophomore made the Swathers run to the state championship game even more exciting. While Zach Esau and Zach Vogt connected for 54 times for 1,010 yards and 11 touchdowns, Cox made his presence known with 49 catches for 858 yards and six touchdowns of his own. Cox led Hesston in receiving in the Class 3A state championship game versus Rossville.
8] Brayden Francis – Sedgwick 5’10” 150 lbs senior – Hooper Schroeder to Brayden Francis became the big-time connection in Class 2-1A and the Heart of America league during the 2016 season. Schroeder found Francis 47 times for 808 yards and 15 touchdowns during the Cardinals 7-3 campaign. Francis is a solid special teams asset as the Sedgwick kicker and a top kick returner.
9] Andrew Brautman – Ark City 6’1” 180 lbs senior – Brautman and the fade route had a special bond in 2016. Many of the Bulldogs big plays last season came on long bombs from Brock Dowler to Brautman. Ark City’s top receiver registered 33 catches for 658 yards and five touchdowns, all while averaging 20 yards per reception.
10] Tanner King – Eisenhower 6’2” 185 lbs senior – Shaped like a tight end, King is force to be reckoned with in the AVCTL. He bullies defensive backs when he is downfield blocking. The Tigers hit King on several quick short routes and lobs down the field if there is a size mismatch. As a junior, King caught 29 passes for 497 yards and eight touchdowns.
11] Tryee Watkins – Ark City 5’11” 160 lbs junior WR – Watkins impressed many people last year with his field awareness and shifty running once he catches the football. As a sophomore, he recorded 16 catches for 204 yards and five touchdowns.
Others to watch:
Devon Anderson - Douglass, Thomas Helten – Bishop Carroll, Ben Smith – Andover, Jordan Schippers – Colby, Trent Scheer – Cheney, Jacob Funk – Hillsboro, Aidan Hartman - Andover, Caden Williams – Trinity, Brendan Webb – Buhler, Mason Fairchild Andale, Reese Nebel – Hesston, Chance Rodriguez – Holcomb, Carter Blackburn – Holcomb, Dawsen Shalberg – Lakin, Peyton Harvey – Little River, Jalen Smith – Wichita Northwest, Cole Strickler – Pike Valley, Colton Noonan – Burlingame, Bradan Slemp – Hugoton, Billy Conaway – SM North, Logan Talley – Mill Valley, Alex Barton – Central Plains, Karson Waters – Macksville, Tristan Davis - Aquinas