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June 22, 2012All-star football continues this weekend, as the Nebraska eight-man all-stars host Kansas in their annual game, to be played Saturday at Doane College in Crete, with kickoff set for 7 p.m.
Mike Speirs, a nine-time state championship coach at Howells, and Boyd County's Steve Colfack, who coached four state finalists at Butte, will be the co-head coaches for the Nebraska squad, with Mike Kozeal of 2011 Class D-2 champion Sargent and Jim Clarkson, who led his team to last year's D-2 semifinals, serving as assistant coaches.
Providing financial support for the game are Pinnacle Bank and Cricket Sports, both long-time backers of Nebraska high school sports.
As usual, the Nebraska team won't lack for playmakers on offense; the bigger question will be how to get all of them enough touches. Sargent's Jed Fenske, who last year rushed for 2,039 yards and scored 49 TDs, will lead an explosive running game that will also include Kalen Anderson of Loomis (1819 yards, 34 TDs), Chance Younger of Bertrand (1,549 yards, 29 TDs) and Trent Mastny of Howells (1,329 yards, 19 TDs).
It figures the Nebraska team will keep to the ground game - and why not, with tremendous dual-threat quarterbacks like Ryan Mitteis of Creighton (1,240 yards rushing, 18 TDs; 1,000 yards passing, 7 TDs; Tait Sibbel of St. Mary's (1,067 yards, 40 TDs rushing; 676 yards passing, 10 TDs) and Garrett Borcher of Pawnee City (1962 yards rushing, 41 TDs; 540 yards passing, 13 TDs) are available.
If the Nebraska does pass, those quarterbacks can look to University of Iowa recruit Drew Ott (52 catches, 960 yards, 18 TDs) or South Loup's Zane Ellis (16 catches, 313 yards, 7 TDs).
Anchoring the line will be all-staters Logan Rath of Giltner and Severin Bach of Randolph.
These are all, all-stars, so the defense will have plenty of firepower, too. Ott (122 tackles, 1 Division I scholarship), naturally, as well as all-staters Jordan Russell of Garden County (128 tackles, five fumble recoveries), Jacob Olmstead of Overton (120 tackles) and Blake Krings of St. Francis will lead the linebacker group. Mitteis is an all-state defensive back, as is Ellis (118 tackles, 7 INTs).
On the off chance Nebraska has to punt, they will have one of the best in eight-man in Pender's Zach Johnson. The team will also sport a three-time all-state place kicker in Sargent's Tyke Kozeal.
Nebraska teams always compete well in these all-star affairs against out-of-state competition and you figure this year will be no different, especially with that star-studded array of coaches on staff.
Here is the complete Nebraska roster:
Logan Rath, Giltner
Ryan Mitteis, Creighton
Blake Krings, St. Francis
Drew Ott, Giltner
Tait Sibbel, St. Mary's
Kalen Anderson, Loomis
Zane Ellis, South Loup
Zach Johnson, Pender
Garrett Borcher, Pawnee City
Chance Younger, Bertrand
Trent Mastny, Howells
Guy Fenske, Sargent
Tyke Kozeal, Sargent
Jed Fenske, Sargent
Dexter Hanzel, Humphrey
Caleb Pelster, Elgin/Pope John
Jordan Russell, Garden County
Kameron Kaelin, Nebraska Christian
Isaac Jessen, Emerson-Hubbard
Severin Bach, Randolph
Derek DeMers, High Plains Community
Caleb Lackaff, North Central
Kellen Unvert, Freeman
Jacob Olmstead, Overton