There was no need to remind Lawrence High football players what to expect out of Shawnee Mission North this week.
The Lions remember plenty about SM North senior quarterback Will Schneider, who totaled 443 yards of offense and four touchdowns against LHS in the first round of the playoffs last year.
But this time, the LHS secondary is excited to show what it can do against a top passing attack at 5 tonight at LHS. Kickoff was moved up two hours because of anticipated inclement weather.
“We can prove ourselves a lot, especially going against some of the top wide receivers in the league,” junior cornerback Relle Dye said. “I’m looking forward to it. I think we’re all looking forward to it.”
The Lions (1-0) limited SM Northwest to only seven complete passes last week while junior Dante’ Jackson and sophomore Jaxon Malone grabbed interceptions.
On paper, the Lions have to make up for their size in the secondary. Cornerbacks Dye (5-foot-3, 144 pounds) and Malone (5-5, 121) will be smaller than most of their offensive counterparts, but Dye said he’s ready to prove that belief wrong, too.
Safeties Cade Burghart (5-7, 154) and James Reeder (6-0, 172) will also help out in coverage.
“I feel like we’re overlooked by every team in the league because of our height,” Dye said. “But we don’t care.”
Schneider led the Indians (1-0) to a 38-7 victory over SM South last week, throwing for 324 yards and running for another 120. One of Schneider’s strengths is throwing the ball quickly, which makes it difficult for pass rushers to get in his way.
“He’s big. He’s 6-foot-4, (205) pounds and he’s played 30 football games,” LHS coach Dirk Wedd said. “He’s been a really good quarterback. His freshman year, he threw for well over 1,000 yards.
“He’s seen everything. You’re not going to outsmart him. He’s a winner. He lit us up for about 34 points last year against a really good defense. He definitely has our respect.”
But the Lions are looking forward to the challenge, especially in the secondary.
“It’ll be fun,” Burghart said. “They passed all over us last year, so it’ll be exciting to do better.”
LHS probable starters
LT — Kristian Russell, jr.
LG — Nick Englebert, jr.
C — Jacob Mills, jr.
RG — Jesse Tunget, sr.
RT — Kevin Nichols, sr.
QB — Dante’ Jackson, jr.
RB — Trey Moore, sr.
WR — Harrison King, jr.
WR — Caleb Mondi, jr.
WR — Jalen Dudley, jr.
WR — Clarence King, so.
K — Cole Brungardt, sr.
P — Dante’ Jackson, jr.
DE — Jacob Unruh, sr.
DT — Mark Greene, sr.
DT — BJ Murry, sr.
DE — Eric Galbreath, so.
LB — Santino Gee, sr.
LB — Angel Garcia, jr.
LB — Erik Shackelford, sr.
CB — Relle Dye, jr.
CB — Jaxon Malone, so.
SS — James Reeder, sr.
FS — Cade Burghart, sr.