Countdown to Kickoff: Andover Central eyes elusive first title

Countdown to Kickoff: Andover Central
Published: Aug. 28, 2023 at 10:50 PM CDT
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ANDOVER, Kan. (Catch it Kansas) - The Andover Central Jaguars have been in the mix as much as anybody in Class 4A over the last decade.

Their proof is a trio of runner-up finishes, coming up just shy of hoisting the first championship trophy that the program is still chasing.

The Jaguars finished 7-4 with a quarterfinal loss to Wamego one year ago, just one season after their third second-place finish.

They must replace their starting quarterback and skill position players, but young experience has the Jags confident in 2023.

“We wanna go there and make our stand because we haven’t got a state title ever,” senior Kaden Seibel said. “If we go out and get one, we can finally say mission accomplished. ... It would be pretty awesome to be the team that finally got one.”

The offense will feature Jace Jefferson under center with a new group of wideouts and running backs, having to replace the production of Braden Barcewski, Cooper Tabor, Drew Veatch and Co. The offensive line does return young starters, though.

The defensive side is where the Jags will make their calling. Jayden Joy, Kyle Newsom, Collin Sheeran, Landon Kitterman and Jace Alder return as major contributors and leaders on that side.

“The tradition we have, I think our players understand that to get on the field defensively, you have to be able to run well and you have to be able to be physical,” head coach Derek Tuttle said.

The Jags open at home against Buhler on Friday.