Kansas High School Coaching Changes for 2018

Don Melby retired after 37 years & 216 wins as head coach at Pike Valley. (by Matt Gilmore, Kpreps)
By: Matt Gilmore & Conor Nicholl for Kpreps.com
Aug 28, 2018

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For the second consecutive year, Kpreps aims to keep you informed of all the Kansas high school football coaching changes for this season. If you see that we have omitted a new coach, update us by emailing matt@kpreps.com or contacting us via Twitter @Kpreps or on Facebook.

Class 6A

Gardner-Edgerton – Ryan Cornelsen
After highly successful coaching stops at La Crosse, Hays High and Hutchinson, Ryan Cornelsen heads east to Gardner-Edgerton. The Trailblazers went winless under legendary coach Marvin Diener, who had a long run of great seasons at Salina Central and had four final four or better finishes with Gardner-Edgerton from ’08-11. Diener retired, and the Blazers enter this season 1-12 in their last 13 games, and with only six total wins over the past four seasons. Cornelsen (116-40) has never had a losing season as a head coach. Chris Walters is one of the top assistants after he served in a similar position to Cornelsen at Hays. Mark Simoneau, former Smith Center, Kansas State and NFL standout, is on staff as the strength and conditioning coach. Gregg Webb, whom had an historic run at Claflin, and was head coach at Eudora and in Missouri, stays on staff, too. Gardner-Edgerton changes conferences from the Eastern Kansas League to Sunflower League.

Hutchinson – Mike Vernon
Mike Vernon, an assistant under Randy Dreiling during multiple state titles for Hutchinson, was an easy choice to replace Cornelsen at the Salthawk helm. Vernon was an assistant for Hutchinson state titles in ’08, ’09, and ’11, and then went 29-19 as a head coach. In the last three years, he turned around struggling Nickerson and led the Panthers to the playoffs every season. Before his arrival, Nickerson hadn’t made the postseason in seven years.

Lawrence – Steve Rampy
Steve Rampy returns to the high school ranks after a successful eight-year stint as the offensive coordinator at Pittsburg State. At Pittsburg State, Rampy helped the Gorillas claim the Division II National Championship in 2011, and his offensive units consistently finished near the top of the MIAA Conference in points and total yards per game. Prior to his time with the Gorillas, Rampy spent 25 seasons as head coach at Blue Valley High School; winning four state championships and reaching the title game four other times. At Blue Valley, Rampy posted a record of 176-84. He replaces longtime Lawrence coach Dirk Wedd who retired after 19 years and 104 wins.

Olathe Northwest – Aaron Hafner
Olathe Northwest hired Frontenac native Aaron Hafner as head coach after the retirement of Chip Sherman. Hafner spent the past five seasons as head coach of Luther College in Iowa. Prior to his time at Luther, Hafner was the offensive coordinator at William Penn University. The Ravens are coming off of a 4-win season that feature the school’s first ever playoff victory.

Shawnee Mission East – Justin Hoover
It's been a whirlwind summer for the Shawnee Mission East football program. Dustin Delaney resigned as head coach immediately following the 2017 season citing frustrations with the administration. He accepted the head position at Eaglecrest High School in Centennial, Colorado. Delaney led the Lancers to a 52-8 overall record and two Class 6A state title games culminating in the school’s first state football championship in 2014. Under Delaney, the Lancers never finished worse than the state quarterfinals in Class 6A. 

To replace Delaney, SM East hired Fred Bouchard as head coach. Bouchard’s resume includes five Missouri high school state championships, including four in a span of six seasons at Harrisonville (Mo.). Bouchard also won a state title at Staley in 2011. But late in the summer, Bouchard unexpectedly resigned from SM East to take an opportunity in Illinois.

This time the Lancers turned to new offensive coordinator Justin Hoover. Hoover takes the reigns after initially coming over to SM East to be the OC under Coach Bouchard. Hoover is well-known for his development of quarterbacks through his Spin It Quarterback Academy, and has been a key part of the success of the Bishop Miege football program as the Stags’ offensive coordinator.

Shawnee Mission North – Zach Rampy
Zach Rampy will join his father, Steve Rampy (Lawrence), as a new head coach of a Sunflower League program this fall. Zach takes over for Ben Bartlett who resigned after four seasons leading the Indians. Bartlett helped SM North to a 12-28 record including a pair of playoff wins and a state quarterfinal finish in 2016. 

The younger Rampy was an all-state quarterback at Blue Valley, capturing the Simone Award for the Kansas City Metro’s top player in 2006. He led the Tigers to the Class 5A state title in 2006 with a 34-3 victory over Great Bend. Rapmy played collegiately at Emporia State, and after graduating, served as a graduate assistant on the defensive side of the ball at MIAA rival Pittsburg State. Rampy spent one season as offensive coordinator at Humboldt then joined the college ranks as offensive coordinator and QB coach at Butler County Community College before calling the plays at SM North last fall.

Wichita East – Ene Akpan
Wichita East will turn to Ene Akpan to lead its football program. Akpan served as the defensive coordinator for the Blue Aces last season. East posted a 6-21 record in Bill Coffman’s three seasons. The Blue Aces’ last winning season was a 5-4 campaign back in 2012.

Class 5A

Hays – Tony Crough
Tony Crough is at his fourth stop in four years after he was head coach at Great Bend, Andover, the defensive coordinator at Hutchinson Community College and now the head coach at Hays High. Crough, a former Fort Hays football and baseball player, replaces Randall Rath, who coached three seasons and took a job in Nebraska. Hays High went 3-6 last season. While Rath was known for his run game and defenses, Crough is expected to bring a spread look with greater offensive production. Crough went 10-9 at Great Bend and 6-4 in his one season at Andover.

KC Schlagle – Pat Hansen
After leading the Stallions to a 26-12 record over the past four seasons, Dwayne Williams was not renewed as the Schlagle head coach and returned to the sidelines in his native New Jersey. Williams brought the Stallions exposure through his run-heavy offense that produced back-to-back 2,000-yard rushers in all-stater’s Cornelius Ruff (2,019 yards in 2016) and Ivan Webb (2,842 yards in 2017). Schlagle has hired Pat Hansen to take over the program. Hansen comes to Schlagle from Liberty (Mo.) where he spent eight years as head coach (last in 2007) and 17 years as an assistant. He compiled an overall record of 56-24. Among Hansen’s staff members is former Schlagle standout J’veyon Browning who went on to play running back at Northern Iowa after starring for the Stallions.

Lansing – Dylan Brown
Lansing promoted Dylan Brown to head football coach to lead the Lions’ transition to the newly formed United Kansas Conference. Brown, a Blue Valley graduate, has been on staff at Lansing the past four seasons serving as the offensive coordinator.  Brown takes over for John McCall. The Lions finished the 2017 season with a 2-7 record, Lansing’s worst performance since 2009.

Olathe West – T. J. O’Neill
The newly formed school has tabbed Mill Valley assistant T. J. O’Neill as the Owls’ first coach. O’Neill, a Salina Central graduate, has been part of back-to-back Class 5A state championships as Mill Valley’s offensive coordinator in 2015 and 2016. Olathe West began with a junior varsity schedule in 2017, but will open varsity competition this fall.

Salina Central – Mark Sandbo
Mark Sandbo replaces longtime coach Mike Hall after back-to-back 0-9 seasons. Sandbo was a Smoky Valley and Fort Hays graduate who previously served as an assistant at Dodge City for seven seasons, including the offensive coordinator the past four falls. This his Sandbo’s first head coaching position.

Topeka Highland Park – Michael Foristiere
Mike Foristiere takes over the challenge of building a competitive football program at Topeka Highland Park. Foristiere, who played at Oregon, comes to Topeka from the west coast where he’s coached for more than 35 years. The Scots enter the 2018 season having lost 34 consecutive games. Highland Park’s last victory came against KC Harmon in Week 2 of the 2014 season.

Valley Center – Scott L’Ecuyer
Caleb Smith turned around the longtime struggling Valley Center program, and then relinquished head coaching duties after last fall to focus on administrative duties. Scott L’Ecuyer, a former Haven head coach and Valley Center assistant, takes over a 5-4 team. L’Ecuyer went 5-22 at Haven, a program that has long struggled to win games.

Wichita Heights – Dominick Dingle
Terry Harrison took the head coaching position at Bethel College, and veteran Garden City assistant Dominick Dingle moves in as head coach. Harrison went 37-17 as Falcons’ coach, including 6-4 last year. Dingle, a Garden City assistant for 10 seasons, is in his first head coaching job. Heights averaged 37 points per game has plenty of firepower back, led by senior quarterback K’Vonte Baker.

Class 4A

Arkansas City – Jon Wiemers
Coach Jon Wiemers returns to Ark City where he was previously head coach in 2011 and 2012. Wiemers takes over for Braden Smith who coached the Bulldogs for five seasons. Wiemers served as the offensive coordinator at Southeast Missouri State in Cape Girardeau (Mo.) the past two seasons.  During his first stint at Ark City, Wiemers led the Bulldogs to an overall record of 11-8.

Eudora – Sean Hayden
Sean Hayden takes over for Phil Katzenmeier at Eudora. Katzenmeier served as Eudora’s head coach for the past three seasons and led the Cardinals to 12 victories. Hayden comes to Eudora from Augusta where he coached the Oriole defense the past four seasons. Hayden played in high school at South Gray before playing at Dodge City Community College. Eudora returns 14 total starters including senior quarterback Gavin Elston.

Goddard – Tom Beason
Scott Vang led Goddard to 11-2 and 11-1 marks in the last two falls, and then left to take an athletic director position. Goddard transitions down to 4A and is one of the class favorites. First-year coach Tommy Beason was a Goddard assistant six years and had a previous stint as Wichita North’s head coach. Five offensive and three defensive starters are back for the Lions.

KC Piper – Rick Pollard
Chris Brindle had a successful run as Piper head coach and finished 4-5 last fall, his first season not making the playoffs in his seven years. Brindle stayed on staff as an assistant, and Rick Pollard is now head coach. Pollard was a longtime Mill Valley assistant and helped the Jaguars capture state titles in 2015 and 2016.

Mulvane – Daniel Myears
Daniel Myears takes over at his alma-mater after long-time head coach Dave Fennewald. Fennewald led the Wildcats to a 144-114 record over his 26 years at the school. Myears has been on staff for the past 16 seasons and also serves as the Mulvane girls basketball coach. The Wildcats return 14 total starters to give Myears a lot to work with in 2018.

Rose Hill – Lee Weber
Lee Weber takes over the reigns at Rose Hill replacing Ray Boese. Weber spent the last three seasons as head coach at Wamego where he led the Red Raiders to a 14-16 record and two playoff appearances. Prior to his time at Wamego, Weber served as the head coach at Council Grove. He inherits a Rocket program that has posted a 15-41 overall record since winning the Class 4A state title in 2011.

Ulysses – Rick Cue
A terrible tragedy hit Ulysses this summer when Jason Kenny, the longtime coach and athletic director, passed away. Kenny was in his 24th year overall and had served 18 seasons as head coach with a 135-60 record. Last year, Ulysses had its most inexperienced team and went 1-8. Rick Cue, a longtime assistant coach, will serve as interim head coach. Additionally, Gene Flax, a veteran athletic director most notably at TMP-Marian and most recently at Russell, will serve as interim AD.

Class 3A

Bishop Ward – Eddie Minor
Eddie Minor will take over the challenge of turning around the Bishop Ward football program. Long known as a baseball school, the Cyclone football program has lost its last 38 games dating back to the 2013 season. Minor has previously coached at KC Washington and at Marysville.

Clay Center – Ted Brown
After a 7-4 season that saw the Tigers advance to the 4A-II quarterfinals, Clay Center will open with new leadership this season. Todd Rice left the school to return to North Platte (Mo.) where head previously coached. Clay Center will turn to Ted Brown to try and continue the momentum despite heavy hits to graduation. Brown, a Dodge City native, has coached at Ingalls (8-Man, Division II) and most recently at Hiawatha (3A/4A-II) where he led the Redhawks the past two seasons.

Clearwater – Jeremy Scheufler
Clearwater hired Haysville Campus offensive coordinator Jeremy Scheufler to take over for Dirk Ankerholz. Scheufler takes over a Clearwater program that posted just one win a year ago.

Hiawatha – Curtis Myers
Curtis Myers takes over at Hiawatha after Ted Brown departed to take the Clay Center job. Myers was an assistant with Brown the past two seasons at Hiawatha and prior to that was with Brown at Ingalls. Myers, who was the Redhawk defensive coordinator, should benefit from an experienced group as Hiawatha returns nine starters on each side of the ball.

Hugoton – Nick O’Loughlin
Nick O’Loughlin returns to his hometown of Hugoton after serving as an assistant at Saint Francis. O’Loughlin’s Eagles have posted five-win seasons in three of the past five years. Hugoton returns 14 total starters which should ease the transition in the competitive Great West Activities Conference.

Larned – Tad Remy
Few coaches have made as significant of an impact as A.B. Stokes did during his time at Larned. Stokes posted a 27-32 record in leading the Indians to three playoff appearances in the past six seasons. Prior to Stokes’ arrival, Larned had won 11 total games in the previous eight season and had gone winless three times. Stokes left Larned to coach collegiately, and Larned promoted Tad Remy, an assistant under Stokes for the past five seasons.

Nickerson – John Wellman
John Wellman posted multiple successful seasons at Chase and went 40-19 as head coach. Wellman also was a former assistant to coach Mike Vernon, and replaced Vernon this year when Vernon went to Hutchinson. Nickerson was 7-3 in 2017 and has made the playoffs the last three years.

Parsons – Kurt Friess
In hiring its fourth head football coach in the past six seasons, Parsons turned to a familiar face in Kurt Friess. Friess, an elementary school principal in town, starred at linebacker for the Vikings before moving on to play at Pittsburg State where he earned an all-conference honors as a defensive lineman in 1988. The challenge for Friess, will be to mold a talented group of Vikings into consistency on the football field. Parsons has enjoyed recent success at the state level in basketball and baseball, but has posted just a 6-49 record since its last winning season – a 7-3 campaign back in 2011.

Russell – Jordan Echer
Jordan Echer is the new head coach at Russell after Jeff Brull left for a position in Dodge City. Echer played collegiately at Sterling before graduating from Fort Hays State. He served as the head football coach at Leon-Bluestem the past two seasons leading the Lions to a 5-13 record. Russell finished 4-5 a season ago; their most wins since 2010. The Broncos haven’t reached the playoffs since the 2006 season.

Wamego – Weston Moody
Former Manhattan assistant Weston Moody replaces Lee Weber at Wamego. Weber left the Red Raiders to take the head position at Rose Hill. Moody spent the last five seasons at Manhattan and served as the Indians’ defensive coordinator in 2017. He inherits a Wamego program that has posted a 34-24 record over the past six seasons.

Wichita Trinity – Wes Miller
Wes Miller takes over at Wichita Trinity and will try the be the coach the leads the Knights to their first ever playoff appearance. Since the beginning of the program in 2008, the Knights have posted a 45-45 overall record. Miller, a former Friends University players, comes to Trinity from Whitewater-Remington where he served as an assistant.

Class 2A

Belle Plaine – C.J. Madison
Madison, a West Elk graduate, takes over Dragon team that finished 2-7 a year ago. Madison was head coach at Moscow before spending time at the collegiate level at Hutchinson Community College and Northeastern State (Okla.). Belle Plaine had a long losing streak before back-to-back 2-7 marks. The Dragons have dropped 41 straight conference contests.

Central Heights – Bob Risch
Bob Risch takes over for Richard Mobley at Central Heights after a two-year stint. Risch, a former Anderson County assistant, takes over a Viking program that has posted winless records in two of the past three seasons, including last year.

Eureka – Jason Nichols
Jason Nichols, the former El Dorado head coach, replaces Mike Davison. Nichols went 9-18 with the Wildcats, and Davison finished 11-26 in four years with Eureka. The Tornadoes went 3-6 and will not have home games this fall due to a tornado that struck the town in late June.

Horton – Mark Friess
Veteran coach Mark Friess has posted an 81-117 record in a 26-year coaching career. Friess replaces Nick Dowell, who will stay on staff as an assistant. Horton went 3-6 last fall and has five all-time playoff appearances, with the last in ’14.

Mission Valley – Justin Duncan
Justin Duncan is the third head coach in three years at Mission Valley. Last season, the Vikings finished 6-4 before Jeff Savage took the head job at Doniphan West. Mill Valley has three straight winning seasons and three straight playoff berths. Duncan is in his first head coaching job after he has served as an assistant. He is also the Mill Valley head baseball coach.

Oskaloosa – Matt Johnson
Longtime assistant Matt Johnson replaces veteran head coach Scott Whaley at Oskaloosa. Johnson has served as an assistant since 2007 and the defensive coordinator the last three years. Whaley compiled a 74-69 record in 12 years as head coach. Oskaloosa went 3-6 last fall. Johnson does have head coaching experience from Spearville where he collected a 20-20 record in four years.

Southwestern Heights – Matt Bell
Matt Bell, the former Fowler head coach, takes over for Matt Scripsick, who remains on staff as the schools’ athletic director, math teacher and assistant track coach. Southwestern Heights has not been over .500 since an 8-2 mark in 2007.

Thomas More Prep – David Bowen
David Bowen, the former Stanton County coach, takes over for Jason Cauley, who returned to the west coast. Bowen went 5-13 in two seasons at Stanton County, the same record Cauley had at TMP. Bowen will have a run first offense, while Cauley featured a wide-open passing offense. Last season, David McFarland passed for 2,913 yards in nine contests and set the state record with 648 passing yards in Week 1. TMP finished only 3-6, but upped its offense from 18.4 points per contest to 30.1 points a game. McFarland has graduated, along with the vast majority of the key contributors.

Whitewater-Remington – Simon McKee
Halstead graduate and former Tabor College quarterback Simon McKee takes over as the head coach at Remington. The Broncos finished with just one victory a season ago and haven’t posted a winning record since 2010.

Class 1A

Leon-Bluestem – Jeremiah Fiscus
Jeremiah Fiscus takes over for Jordan Echer, who went to Russell. Bluestem finished 3-6 last fall. Fiscus, from Stafford, played at Dodge City and McPherson, and coached at several colleges, including Division II Henderson State (Ark.).

Marion – Shaun Craft
Marion finished 8-3 in the final season of the 30-year Grant Thierolf era. He went 185-103 in his career, including a state runner-up showing, and has stayed on as head track coach. Shaun Craft, the former offensive coordinator, replaces Thierolf as head coach.

Republic County – Faron Kraft
Well-traveled Faron Kraft, in his 11th season as a head coach, takes over a Buff program that went 5-6 to 0-9 the last two falls. Kraft has coached at multiple schools, including Ness City-Dighton, Leoti, Medicine Lodge and most recently Topeka Highland Park.

Stanton County – Bret Kendrick
Bret Kendrick, a Stanton County graduate, returns for his second stint as a head coach. He coached for 19 years, the first nine as an assistant coach and the last 10 as head coach. Since Kendrick stepped aside, SC has nine wins in the last five years. The Trojans have one-win improvements in the last four falls. David Bowen went from Stanton County to TMP-Marian in Hays.

Sublette – Lance Carter
Lance Carter, the school’s athletic director and boys’ basketball coach, replaces Matt Fox. The Lancers are on a 23-game losing streak. Last year, Sublette’s closest margin of loss was 21 points.

Syracuse – Dustin Doze
Dustin Doze took over for longtime coach John Guerrero. Doze played high school football in Brewster. He served as a former junior high and high school assistant at Syracuse. The Bulldogs were 3-6 each of the last two falls.

Wabaunsee – Jess Rutledge
Former assistant Jess Rutledge replaces Brian Henry, the head coach for 10 years. Henry won 23 contests as Wabaunsee struggled against the powerful Mid-East League. This fall, Wabaunsee will not be a member of the Mid-East League in football. While the schedule changes, the district is still challenging with Centralia and Valley Heights.

Class 8-Man, Division I

Bennington – Jay Macy
Jay Macy has served in multiple roles during the last several decades for Bennington. In ’94, he was head coach for a Division I runner-up finish, the best showing in school annals. Macy was Bennington’s principal at one time. Last year, he returned to staff as the defensive coordinator, tweaked the schemes and had a massive improvement. Bennington permitted 25.8 points per contest, a drop of 26.9 points per game from the previous year, the second-best eight-man improvement. Bennington bumped from 2-7 to 6-3. Macy replaced former coach David Gillett who is now an assistant at Neodesha.

Lebo – Brian Hadley
Brandon Hadley, a former assistant, takes over for Troy McArthur at Lebo. The Wolves finished 7-3 and 4-5 the last two seasons with several winning streaks. In ’16, Lebo had a six-game winning streak. Last year, the Wolves opened 0-5 and then captured four straight wins.

Leoti-Wichita County – Brant Douglas
Brant Douglas takes over for Cale Warden as the Indians posted 5-4 and 3-6 marks in its first two eight-man seasons. Warden had the option offense, while Douglas will use the spread. Leoti returns the bulk of its roster with 25 of 28 players as non-seniors last fall. The Indians last made the playoffs in ’02.

Lincoln – Dustin Patee
Dustin Patee has previously served as a Beloit/St. John’s-Tipton assistant and head coach at Logan-Palco and Canton-Galva. Patte is 12-23 in his career. He takes over a Lincoln program that finished 1-8. Don Long had coached for two seasons.

Oswego – Matt Fowler
In one of the bigger offseason coaching changes, Matt Fowler, one of the most successful eight-man coaches in the last five years, headed from Spearville to the southeast corner of the state and near his parents. Fowler, a Lockwood (Mo.) native, went 62-32 at Spearville, including four straight double-digit seasons and a state title. Fowler will run the single wing offense as Oswego transitions down to eight man after a 1-8 record last fall.

Peabody-Burns – Kody Tegtmeier
Kody Tegtmeier, previously an assistant or head coach at Hanover, Downs-Lakeside and Bird City-Cheylin, replaced longtime coach David Pickens at Peabody-Burns. Peabody has had a wins drop the last four seasons from 9-1 to 6-4 to 5-4 to 2-7.

St. Francis – Nick Fawcett
Fawcett, formerly a Hays High assistant, replaces Rodney Yates. Saint Francis enjoyed a successful three-year run under Yates with 10-1, 11-1 and 7-2 marks. The 11-1 season featured a state runner-up to Osborne, the best showing in school annals. Fawcett has also assisted at Cimarron and Ingalls. He expects to run the single wing and has two key returners at the skill positions with quarterback Brady Dinkel and running back Jordan Raby. Yates came from Colorado and is now the head coach at Cambridge (Neb.).

St. John – Mike Simpson
Mike Simpson is the third head coach in three years. The Tigers went 2-7 last season and have averaged two wins a fall for the last five seasons. St. John’s last winning season came in 2012 when the Tigers finished 8-2.

Spearville – Travis Callaway
Travis Callaway takes over powerhouse Spearville from Matt Fowler, who went to Oswego. Callaway went 3-15 in two years at Onaga. The Lancers will move from the single wing offense to the I formation. Veteran assistants Chris Sohm and Andrew Kempke remain on staff. Sohm served virtually all of Fowler’s nine-year tenure at Spearville and is the defensive coordinator and head boys’ basketball coach.

Class 8-Man, Division II

Chase – Brent Schneider

Chase has its third coach in three seasons with Brent Schneider. The Kats had John Wellman, who went 40-19, and Travis Tesone, who finished 2-7 last year. Schneider has formerly served as an El Dorado assistant and Ellsworth head coach, most recently coaching the Bearcats in ’16.

Doniphan West – Jeff Savage
Well-traveled Jeff Savage takes over Doniphan West, which transitions down from Class 2-1A after a 6-4 season. Savage has coached in multiple places in the last decade, including successful runs at Quivira Heights and Central-Burden, and more recently at Canton-Galva, Goodland and Mission Valley. He is 219-118 in his career and enters his 34th year as a head coach. Savage is well-known for his passing offenses.

Linn – Ron Smith
Ron Smith takes over at Linn after Jeremy Miller’s departure to Pike Valley. Smith, the school’s athletic director, will try and turn around a Bulldog program that has one playoff appearance (2011) in the past 14 years and one winning record (5-4 in 2005) during that same period.

Onaga – Ben Kolterman
Travis Callaway went to Spearville and took over for Matt Fowler, and Onaga alum Ben Kolterman takes over for the Buffs. Kolterman was a Buffalo standout in the ‘90s. Onaga is 2-7 and 1-8 in two seasons of eight-man football. The Buffaloes were Division I the last two seasons and will be in Division II this year.

Osborne – Brandon Wise
Brandon Wise, previously at Marias des Cygnes Valley, takes over one of eight-man’s powerhouses. Osborne captured Division I titles in ’13 and ’16 and went 9-2 last fall. Cullen Riner has been on staff for more than a decade in various capacities, including head and assistant coach. Riner was the former head coach and is again an assistant. Wise went 1-8 last fall with MdCV, while Osborne is a top-five Division II program after it shifted down a class.

Pike Valley – Jeremy Miller
Don Melby, also one of eight-man’s best coaches, retired after 40 years in his hometown. Melby went 216-143 as a head coach, including sub-state showings the last two seasons. PV finished 11-1 last fall and tied the school record for single season victories. Jeremy Miller takes over a team that returns one starter, Brody Carlgren. Miller served as head coach at Linn the past few seasons.

Pretty Prairie -- Steve Peutz
Steve Peutz is the new coach at Pretty Prairie after C.T. Young resigned late in the summer. Peutz is from Garden Plain and went on to run track at Hutchinson Community College before finishing his career on the football field and the track at Friends. The Bulldogs return five starters on each side of the ball from last year's 7-3 team. 

Rural Vista – Derron Reddick
Jeff Hostetter, one of the state’s all-time great eight-man coaches, coached alma mater Hope and then Rural Vista when Hope and White City formed a co-op. Hostetter retired and now the Heat has their third coach in three years. Hostetter went 221-76 in 27 years. RV is now 5-4, 7-3, 5-4 and 4-5 since the co-op. Derron Riddick replaced Adam Flowers, a former assistant. Flowers coached one season.

Southern Coffey Co. – Trevor Smith
Trevor Smith replaces Todd Griffin, who served for one season and finished 2-7. Griffin joined the staff at Lyndon. Last season, the Titans had to face Division I runner-up St. Paul and Division II champion Hanover. Southern Coffey County has defeated Waverly each of the last two years. The Titans last had a winning record in 2008 at 5-4, but also finished 10-1 in 2004 and 9-1 in 2005.

Thunder Ridge – Joel Struckhoff
Former Thunder Ridge great Joel Struckhoff returns to lead the Longhorns this fall. As a senior in 2011, Struckhoff led the Longhorns to the 8-Man, Division II state title with a 46-14 victory over Baileyville B&B. Struckhoff left Thunder Ridge as one of the most decorated 8-Man players in Kansas history. He still holds the Kansas state record for career rushing yards (6,919), career points scored (856), and career touchdowns scored (127). His challenge is to rebuild a proud Longhorn program that has won only three total games over the past three seasons combined. Former Longhorn quarterback Blane Hrabe and lineman Dillon Coomes are on staff as assistants.

Wheatland-Grinnell – Jesse Vincent
Wheatland-Grinnell bumps back up to the eight-man ranks after a stint in six-man football. The Thunderhawks won three games in ’17. Todd Flinn had previously coached four seasons. Vincent is expecting around 20 players out, including 13 juniors and seniors. Neither Wheatland or Grinnell has made the playoffs since ’02.

6-Man Football

Moscow – Brett Harp
Former La Crosse Shrine Bowler Tayler Stull left Moscow after one season and is now a Southwestern Heights assistant. Brett Harp takes over a program that will transition to six-man for the first time. Moscow finished 3-4 last year and was ninth in eight-man scoring defense at just 12.9 points permitted per game.




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Gardner-Edgerton, Ryan Cornelsen, Hutchinson, Mike Vernon, Lawrence, Steve Rampy, Olathe Northwest, Aaron Hafner, Shawnee Mission East, Justin Hoover, Bishop Miege, Shawnee Mission North, Zach Rampy, Wichita East, Ene Akpan, Hays, Tony Crough, KC Schlagle, Pat Hansen, Lansing, Dylan Brown, Olathe WEst, T.J. ONeill, Salina Central, Mark Sandbo, Topeka Highland Park, Mike Foristiere, Valley Center, Scott LEcuyer, Wichita Heights, Dominick Dingle, Arkansas City, Jon Wiemers, Eudora, Sean Hayden, Goddard, Tom Beason, KC Piper, Rick Pollard, Mulvane, Daniel Myears, Rose Hill, Lee Weber, Ulysses, Rick Cue, Bishop Ward, Eddie Minor, Clay Center, Ted Brown, Clearwater, Jeremy Scheufler, Hiawatha, Curtis Myers, Hugoton, Nick OLoughlin, Larned, Tad Remy, Nickerson, John Wellman, Parsons, Kirk Friess, Russell, Jordan Echer, Wamego, Weston Moody, Wichita Trinity, Wes Miller, Belle Plaine, C.J. Madison, Central Heights, Bob Risch, Eureka, Jason Nichols, Horton, Mark Friess, Mission Valley, Justin Duncan, Oskaloosa, Matt Johnson, Southwestern Heights, Matt Bell, Thomas More Prep, David Bowen, Whitewater-Remington, Simon McKee, Leon-Bluestem, Jeremiah Fiscus, Marion, Shaun Craft, Republic County, Faron Kraft, Stanton County, Bret Kendrick, Sublette, Lance Carter, Syracuse, Dustin Doze, Wabaunsee, Jess Rutledge, Bennington, Jay Macy, Lebo, Brian Hadley, Leoti-Wichita Co., Brant Douglas, Lincoln, Dustin Patee, Oswego, Matt Fowler, Peabody-Burns, Kody Tegtmeier, St. Francis, Nick Fawcett, St. John, Mike Simpson, Spearville, Travis Callaway, Chase, Brent Schneider, Doniphan West, Jeff Savage, Linn, Ron Smith, Onaga, Ben Kolterman, Osborne, Brandon Wise, Pike Valley, Don Melby, Jeremy Miller, Rural Vista, Derron Reddick, Southern Coffey Co., Trevor Smith, Thunder Ridge, Joel Struckhoff, Wheatland-Grinnell, Jesse Vincent, Moscow, Brett Harp, Pretty Prairie, Steve Peutz