The Humboldt Cubs will come into the Kansas state playoffs with an undefeated regular season record of 8-0. That hasn’t been accomplished by a Cub team since 1982. Back when the all mighty Mark Dobbins wore the Cub uniform. They have done so this season with a suffocating defense and a whole lot of speed on the offense outscoring opponents 461-44.  The Topeka Capital Journal has Humboldt ranked #4 in class 2A.  What a lot of Cub fans are wondering , how will they do against the stiffer competition in the playoffs? It is a good question. In years past, even with good seasons they would lose in the first or second round of the playoffs . And usually lose badly.  I really think this year is different. We will all know how good this team is after the second round with a potential match up against 7-1 Osage City. If the black and orange take care of business this Thursday against the 4-4 West Franklin Falcons Humboldt should shut down the town by 6 o’clock next Friday November 2nd. It will be the biggest game this town has seen in quite some time.

Whoah lets slow this down a bit . The Cubs have to win the first round game before they can do anything else. For Humboldt they just need to keep doing what they have been doing. The front seven on defense just causing havoc blowing up the Falcons offensive plays . When they do that they force the other teams to try and run stuff they aren’t comfortable doing.  West Franklin does not like to throw the football much. They are a run first team and then again on second.  David Watts and Tucker Hurst will definitely be on the Falcons radar in this weeks game plan.  When teams try and take those two away Humboldt’s Dagen Goodner is there to swallow up anything that gets past the front four.  Last week senior Caleb Klauman and junior Joshua Hull might of played their best game from the defensive end positions.  They will need to play at a high level the rest of the season if Humboldt is to go to the promise land. Senior defensive back Kyler Allen was tackling with extreme violent hits in last weeks dismantling of Southeast Cherokee. If he keeps that up watch out!

You want to talk offense? This Cub offense scores as quick as I have ever seen a high school team score. There is just so many weapons. Every team will key on junior Conor Haviland , and rightfully so. But as soon as they do that quarterback Dagen Goodner has several different options to chose from. He can keep it himself , hand the ball to Allen on the reverse sweep, or he can throw to four young men in route ready to score. Every person on the offense needs to be ready for when their number is called .  Teams will start to take certain things away and try to make you beat them in a different way. Teams that are able to adjust are the ones who will continue throughout the playoffs. The Humboldt offensive line deserves a lot of credit as well for the success this year. They are creating running lanes well and haven’t had a whole lot of holding penalties or false starts.  One player that really stands out to me is junior Taylor Lassman. He can play anywhere on the line and can get out in front and block down field as well.

West Franklin’s senior quarterback Clayton Noyons leads the Falcons in passing and rushing yards in 2018. He likes to keep the ball after faking the inside run and go off tackle. He doesn’t look real quick but has some good straight line speed. The Falcons run a similar offense to what Neodesha has run for years. The triple option with a lot of misdirection. The Falcons will use play action to beat you with a pass here and there. Senior running back Brayden Singer is really effective in between the tackles. Once he gets through the first line of defense he can be tough to catch up to.  Noyons is also a top member of the defense. He will usually line up as a hybrid safety/ linebacker. West Franklin finished fourth in district 2 after going 2-3. One of those wins was a 1-0 forfeit and the other was a big 63-0 victory over Central Heights in a must win game to get in the playoffs. Out scoring opponents 216-161 and completing 3 shutouts in 2018.

Humboldt Cub fans get out and get loud for this team. These young men really deserve that. All the work that was put in during the off season and even with all the blowout regular season wins they continue to go out and work hard in practice to get better every day. I believe they are really just getting this show we get the opportunity to watch started. I hope to see everyone at that beautiful stadium complex Thursday night !

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