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Voice of Reason

Class 2A Pre-Season Rankings

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(I am posting this for @ATLCat Credit to him for the excellent work in this article.)

1. Somerset Briar Jumpers (14-1, 2A State Champions) - It took many years and a walk-off touchdown pass for Somerset to get over the hump and win the first State Title in school history. Now that the seal has been broken, don't be surprised for the Jumpers to make a push toward making lightning strike a second time. Somerset returns standout QB Kaiya Sheron and superstar WR Kade Grundy, and with those two alone will be a tough test. Add in several additional key cogs from last year's team and some new faces on the roster expected to contribute and you have the ingredients for a potential repeat.

2. Lexington Christian Academy Eagles (10-2, Lost to Somerset in Round 2) - The Eagles had the toughest luck of any 2A team potentially. LCA defeated Somerset in the regular season but fell ever so closely in the rematch. LCA's versatile RB Xavier Brown is poised for a breakout year on the statewide level and with an experienced line back, expect big things from the Eagle offense despite losing their QB and standout WR. Defensively, the Eagles will be tough with Mattie Lebryck leading the way.

3. Beechwood Tigers (8-6, Lost to Mayfield in Semi-Finals) - Six losses are not something you see often from Beechwood, but an extremely young team took some serious lumps before rounding into form for a deep playoff push once more. The fruit of that youth movement will be a definite step forward toward competing for a State Title led by Cameron Hergott's Senior campaign. The Tigers still have some questions up front, but with the vast majority of their skill talent back, don't expect a slow start in 2020.

4. Mayfield Cardinals (13-2, Lost to Somerset in State Finals) - One play separated Mayfield from yet another State Title, but the last second pass Somerset connected did not go the Cardinal's way and ended the year in disappointment for a loaded Senior Class. Never count out Mayfield as a favorite to win a title, but with the substantial departures they must overcome, it certainly will not be easy to win their last game. Kylan Gallbreath is the cornerstone for success as he returns at RB poised for a monster season.

5. Breathitt County Bobcats (13-1, Lost to Somerset in Semi-Finals) - Breathitt was unblemished and untested throughout much of 2019 but their season came to a crash in the second half at the Briar Patch. Breathitt returns eight starters on each side of the ball, but losing C.A. Collins is perhaps one of the biggest holes in all of Class 2A to fill. Jaylen Turner took the starting QB job and is poised to turn heads.

6. West Carter Comets (9-4, Lost to Beechwood in Regional Finals) - West Carter may not be the name cache as the teams listed to this point, but do not sleep on a team built to make serious headway in 2020. West Carter returns nine starters on offense and most of their defensive play-makers as well after taking a major step forward last season. 

7. Danville Admirals (3-7, Lost to Somerset in 1st Round) - Seven losses, first round exit, and a 3rd place finish in the District. Danville took one on the chin in 2019 by their historic standards, but a silver lining comes out of it. Danville returns more in their two-deep than potentially any other team in Class 2A after playing a load of underclassmen. Will they make up enough ground to improve their status in a lethal District?

8. Murray Tigers (8-4, Lost to Danville in Round 2) - The Tigers were a tough out in 2019 and posted impressive numbers on offense. Murray will need to replace several key parts of that strong unit, but still have three of the best players in Class 2A. Dynamic RB Charvelle McCallister  and athletic WR Jaiden Jackson will make plays, but the fortunes of the season rest with a defense anchored by DT Sebastian Lawrence.

9. Caldwell County Tigers (8-3, Lost to Murray in Round 1) - Caldwell is a consistent tough out and they demonstrated this once more in the 2019 regular season. Unfortunately, they could not handle Murray twice and had their season cut short by their standards. Caldwell returns QB Russ Beshear and a handful of their other top performers, but will need to show considerable improvement on D, as this was their weak link and ultimate demise.

10. McLean County Cougars (8-5, Lost to Somerset in Regional Finals) - You want a dark horse? McLean County peaked at the right time and took down Owensboro Catholic before succumbing to the eventual champs. McLean is built to make a run again. They return the heartbeat of their ball control offense including a lethal tandem of Andrew Munster and Peyton Caraway.

 

The Next Five to Watch (Alphabetically):

Edmonson County, Lloyd Memorial, Shelby Valley, Walton-Verona, Washington County

 

Ten Players to Know (Alphabetically):

ATH Trent Asher, Leslie County

ATH Xavier Brown, Lexington Christian Academy

RB Caleb Burns, Danville

ATH Leetavious Cline, West Carter

RB Kylan Galbreath, Mayfield

ATH Kade Grundy, Somerset

QB Cameron Hergott, Beechwood

OL Anthony Johns, Lexington Christian Academy

DL/OL Sebastian Lawrence, Murray

QB Kaiya Sheron, Somerset

 

Three Story Lines To Know:

1. Two is Better Than One - Over the past few years the teams with two elite stars have been the gold standard for teams looking to take home the 2A hardware. Somerset's QB Kaiya Sheron and WR Kade Grundy both could end up in the Mr. Football discussion. LCA's RB Xavier Brown will take full advantage of the holes OL Anthony Johns will open. Mayfield RB Kylan Galbreath will do big things on offense while LB Jax Rogers will hold down his side of the ball. Beechwood QB Cameron Hergott looked like a one man show but it was the emergence of RB Avery Courtney that helped them surge. West Carter, Shelby Valley, Leslie County, McLean County, Murray, and Owensboro Catholic all have their own duos ready for breakout seasons.

2. Reset or Rewind Button - Beechwood, Danville, and Lloyd Memorial all had uncharacteristic seasons by their program's rich standards in their respective regular seasons, mostly thanks in large part to a departing Senior Class that forced new players into action. Beechwood seemingly overcame these issues late in the season but the jury is still out on tradition rich Danville and consistent performer Lloyd Memorial. Danville's non-district slate does them few favors, but their district slate may do even less. Will these teams return to their norms or will we be seeing similar disappointments?

3. Crazy Year, Crazy Outcomes? -  One thing is certain in 2020, do not expect normal. Perhaps no season has more teams from "off the pace" with the potential to upset the normalcy we have become accustomed to in Class 2A. Breathitt County, West Carter, McLean County, Edmonson County, Shelby Valley, and surprising Martin County all return an absolute load of talent, despite being teams not accustomed to being in the thick of the race in the past window of years. Will these teams have the horsepower to knock off the traditional powerhouses? That remains to be seen. Don't count out the unexpected though!

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Love seeing West Carter in this conversation. I hope their performance on the field this season validates that ranking.

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Great to see Mclean County getting some love here.  Zach Wagner has done a fantastic job with that program.  They should be favored in every regular season game they play this season, outside a trip to Owensboro Catholic in the middle of the season.  An undefeated season would be one heck of a story in Calhoun!

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5 hours ago, Tigerpride94 said:

Excellent article VOR!

Thanks to @ATLCat. That is his work. All I did is post it for him. And I agree, excellent article!

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2 minutes ago, Voice of Reason said:

Thanks to @ATLCat. That is his work. All I did is post it for him. And I agree, excellent article!

Great job to @ATLCat!

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I did see that at this time, Lloyd Memorial WILL NOT be playing any fall sports..........

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37 minutes ago, Voice of Reason said:

Thanks to @ATLCat. That is his work. All I did is post it for him. And I agree, excellent article!

 

33 minutes ago, Tigerpride94 said:

Great job to @ATLCat!

It's what we've come to expect. The love of the game and attention to detail is evident in the work, week after week, year after year.

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A minor nitpick to be sure, but I would have Mayfield ahead of Beechwood. The Beechies just can't seem to get over that hump.

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Looks good for 1 and 2 but I would switch Beechwood and Mayfield. I'm not sure about any others. 2 team race at first, let's see if any teams can improve and challenge Somerset and LCA.

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Results from last night:

1. Somerset: Beat Whitley Co 40-8

2. LCA: at DeSales tonight

3. Beechwood: Beat Corbin 20-14

4. Mayfield: Lost to McCracken Co 42-7

5. Breathitt Co: Beat Estill Co 60-43

6. West Carter: Beat East Carter 43-0

7. Danville: DNP (next week at Hazard)

8. Murray: Beat Webster Co 47-6

9. Caldwell Co: Beat Crittenden Co 22-0

10. McLean Co: Beat Muhlenberg Co 32-12

Next 5 (alphabetically)

Edmonson Co: Lost to Hancock Co 26-14

Lloyd Memorial: DNP

Shelby Valley: Beat Jackson Co 46-14

Walton-Verona: at NCC tonight

Washington Co: Lost to Bardstown 27-46
 

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1 hour ago, BrosefStalin said:

Who did we find out more about last night -  Beechwood or Mayfield? 

Mayfield 

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1 hour ago, BrosefStalin said:

Who did we find out more about last night -  Beechwood or Mayfield? 

I would say Mayfield because they kind of got some things exposed and questions answered.

Beechwood looked very good and like the Beechwood we are accustomed to, but at the same time I think Corbin is still a huge mystery following a disappointing season and a massive coaching changes.

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