Tanyon Harris has never been part of a Kansas-Missouri rivalry, but he doesn't expect any problems coming to terms with his first.
``I just treat 'em like the Lawrence High-Olathe North thing,'' Harris said. ``It's pretty easy to get up to play 'em.''
Harris, a May graduate of Lawrence High, will play for Kansas in tonight's Coca-Cola Metro Classic, an all-star football game for recent KC metro high school graduates from both sides of the state line.
Kickoff is 7:30 p.m. at Blue Valley Northwest.
Harris, an offensive lineman bound for Coffeyville Community College, is the only city representative in the game. Two Kansas University signees -- Shawnee Mission West running back Henri Childs and Grandview, Mo., wide receiver-quarterback Byron Gasaway -- also will play.
``It's all the best players in Kansas,'' Harris said. ``It's exciting. There are guys I've been playing against for three years. It's a little strange, but it's not too hard to switch competitiveness. There are rivalries and stuff, but you have to form into one unit.''
Kansas head coach Kris Kehl -- the coach at Louisburg -- thinks his team has formed nicely.
``It's always difficult to determine when you're practicing against yourself,'' Kehl said, ``but overall we're pretty prepared in the time we've had to prepare.''
Harris and Childs have caught Kehl's eye. The coach said he planned to run a triple-option offense against Missouri's 4-4 defense. Missouri will run a wing-T offense against Kansas' 4-4 defense.
``We've got a good offensive line,'' Kehl said. ``We have good, physical, talented kids who have grasped the offense we put in. Tanyon Harris is one of those guys we really like. For a kid his size, he moves up and down the field well. And Henri has shown some extremely good talent. The kid's 6-3, 210 pounds and he runs like a deer and makes some incredible cuts. He's an exceptional player.''
Kehl thinks the same of Gasaway, who likely will play both wideout and QB tonight.
``They've got some good, quality kids,'' Kehl said. ``That Gasaway kid is extremely talented.''
Still, Harris expects Kansas to run its Metro Classic winning streak to three. Kansas leads the all-time series, 4-2, and won last year's game, 20-0.
``I'm predicting Kansas,'' Harris said. ``Hopefully big. Knowing it's our last high school game and all, we all want to go out with a bang.''
-- Andrew Hartsock's phone number is 832-7216. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.