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2021 BluegrassPreps Mr. Football Watchlist (9/8)


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A stunning departure dominates the headlines as Wimsatt hands the baton to Humphreys ; The watchlist receives a partial facelift with an infusion of new names ; And Beechwood's leader remains unflappable


In alphabetical order:

Jagger Gillis (QB, Boyle County)

Season to date: 40/56 for 482 yards and 5 touchdowns with 1 interception ; 134 yards rushing and 5 touchdowns

Week 3: Heading into last week's encounter with Pulaski County, Gillis still needed to find his groove and get Boyle County's offense out of neutral. Done and done. The Rebels lit the Maroons up for 60 points, with Gillis completing 17 of 23 balls for over 200 yards and three scores. Throw in two more touchdowns and nearly 70 yards on the ground. Gillis will test a Henderson County defense this week that hasn't played in three weeks. If he and the Rebels can catch the Colonels rusty and flat footed, another big week could be in store.


Cam Hergott (QB, Beechwood)

Season to date: 25/41 for 496 yards and 8 touchdowns ; 339 rushing yards and 3 touchdowns

Highlights: vs. Somerset

Week 3: The touchdown/interception ratio is one of the chief statistical components we look at when gauging a quarterback. For Hergott, his night against Somerset was more about the touchdown/incompletion ratio. Only one of Hergott's nine attempts hit the ground last week with half of his eight completions reaching the endzone. When you factor in his work on the ground, there were eleven total plays where he either threw or ran with the ball. Those eleven snaps yielded 333 total yards and five touchdowns. That's ruthless efficiency. With Wimsatt bowing out of the race, all eyes are once again on last year's winner.


Joe Humphreys (QB, Daviess County)

Season to date: 82/113 for 1,025 yards and 11 touchdowns with 1 interception ; 2 rushing touchdowns

Highlights: vs. Owensboro

Week 3: Last Friday at Daviess County High School was a night to remember for a myriad of reasons. Humphreys led his Panthers onto the field in a hyped up encounter with Wimsatt and the Red Devils for the title of 'best in Owensboro'. Though they fell short in the end, Humphreys did everything in his power to get his team back in the game - which, btw, might have been the best of the weekend - and raised his own stock substantially in the process. He didn't quite reach the video game numbers from the week before, but 39/59 for 368 yards and four touchdowns, plus two more on the ground, will turn a lot of heads his way. As Wimsatt exits the stage, the Owensboro area spotlight is now shining solely on him. 


Clint McKee (RB, Graves County)

Season to date: 77 carries for 394 yards and 7 touchdowns ; 8 catches for 133 yards and a touchdown

Highlights: vs. McCracken County

Week 3: In an era of football that has incrementally reduced the traditional role of the running back position, McKee stands out as one of the few workhorse ball carriers in the state. He toted the rock 26 times against McCracken County a week after logging 38 total touches against Tilghman. His night against the Mustangs produced 166 yards and four touchdowns. He may still be a longshot, but the 462 yards from scrimmage and seven scores he's accumulated the last two weeks have him trending up.


Isaac McNamee (QB, Pikeville)

Season to date: 21/34 for 353 yards and 5 touchdowns with 1 interception

Highlights: vs. Letcher County Central

Week 3: The ground game was so thoroughly dominant against Paintsville back in Week 1 that the game was essentially taken out of McNamee's hands. Against Letcher County Central last week, control of the game was squarely in his grasp. Pikeville's championship winning quarterback found his target on 14 of 20 throws for 280 yards and five touchdowns, with much of that production finding its way into the hands of Zac Lockhart. The pitch and catch combo of McNamee and Lockhart is one of the state's best and will have some prime opportunities to shine against Belfry and LCA in the coming weeks.


Seth Mills (RB, Corbin)

Season to date: 40 carries for 407 yards and 6 touchdowns ; 5 receptions for 102 yards and 2 touchdowns ; 1 passing touchdown

Highlights: vs. Franklin County

Week 3: It's time to give this kid some shine after the night he had in one of the biggest games on last week's schedule. Campbell Field served as a proving ground for the Redhounds against a formidable Franklin County squad and the versatile Mills proved to be the best player on the field. He logged 190 yards from scrimmage with a pair of rushing touchdowns, as well as tossing the game's only touchdown pass. That gives him 445 yards of offense and seven total touchdowns over the last two weeks. In an offense full of playmakers, Mills has proven to be the leader of Corbin's pack of hounds through the first three weeks.


Jack Sivori (QB, St. Xavier)

Season to date: 27/48 for 283 yards and 7 touchdowns with 3 interceptions ; 427 yards rushing and 6 touchdowns

Week 3: After appearing in the 'noteworthy' category for a couple of weeks, Sivori gets a promotion. The duration of this call-up is largely up to him, but his level of play through three weeks has made it hard to ignore him. Against #1 Male, Sivori's arm and legs constituted the majority of second ranked X's offensive output. He played a hand in all three Tiger touchdowns and fell just short of passing and running for 150+ yards each. If his upper body catches up to the threat his lower body is, he could linger in the Mr. Football conversation for a while. St. X is a legit title contender, he has better instincts with the ball in his hands than most running backs, and he's got one of the best 1-2 receiver combos in the state.


Jadarion Smith (DL, Ballard)

Season to date: 26 tackles ; 5.5 sacks and an additional 7 tackles for loss

Highlights: vs. South Oldham

Week 3: Coming into the season, Smith was the lesser known of the top defensive line prospects out of Louisville, behind the higher profile of Selah Brown. With Brown sidelined for the first two weeks, Smith has made up substantial ground by taking up residence in the opposition's backfield. South Oldham found out first hand what a disruptive force he can be as he tallied a game high 13 tackles against the Dragons with a pair of sacks and 3.5 tackles for loss. Smith is on pace for a monster season and has several big games remaining on the schedule to continue raising his own profile.


Gavin Wimsatt (QB, Owensboro)

Season to date: 46/80 for 583 yards passing and 6 touchdowns with 1 interception ; 131 yards rushing and 2 touchdowns

Week 3: The aftershock will linger for some time, but Wimsatt has decided to exit Owensboro, stage left. The next time we see him, he'll be rocking the scarlet and white of Rutgers. His Owensboro swan song was not vintage Wimsatt, but Daviess County's strategy played a role there and the O running game is clicking. He only attempted 16 passes and finished his high school career with 79 yards and a touchdown. Given what we now know, the events of last Friday night at Daviess County could serve as a passing of the torch from Wimsatt to Humphreys. 


Noteworthy performances from Week 3:

Kylan Galbreath (RB/LB, Mayfield) - 165 yards and 3 touchdowns, plus an interception against Paducah Tilghman 

Easton Messer (ATH, CAL) - 111 yards receiving and two touchdowns, plus an interception against Bullitt Central 

Zac Lockhart (WR, Pikeville) - 9 catches for 183 yards and 3 touchdowns against Letcher County Central 

Keyandre Strand (RB, John Hardin) - 259 yards rushing and a touchdown against Elizabethtown 

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1 hour ago, Kanaka Kahakai said:

So Key from Douglass and Anthony from Male are out, but re-do kids are still in?


1 hour ago, Tigerpride94 said:

Vinny Anthony has only 1 touchdown after 3 games. He's great player but that's not Mr. Football number. Maybe he plays his way back in.

I've never bothered to give an explanation for how I choose the players that get the "red carpet" treatment each week, because frankly, there is no precise formula for how this works. I'm mostly going on feel. If I'm choosing the players that I believe are the top 8-10 candidates each week, then Key and Anthony would always be there as long as their play dictates it. In the case of those two players, they haven't had the type of games you'd like to see from receivers who have a legit shot at this award, so I'm giving them the week off (maybe longer, who knows?) in favor of players like Sivori, Smith, Mills, and McNamee, who have earned their way onto the list. 

I keep a list of around 30 total names that I try to keep tabs on each week. Different variables come into play to determine who makes the cut. I don't call this project the "BGP Top 10 Mr. Football Candidates". It more or less is what is says it is. We're just keeping watch over the best players in the Commonwealth week to week. It's fluid.

All it will take is one big game from certain players (like Anthony and Key), and they're right back on the list. There's only so many weeks I can tell the same story when a player has an underwhelming game. The only real exception this year would be Hergott.

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13 hours ago, KyPreps1965 said:

I think with Strand being the state's leading rusher after 3 weeks, he should be on the watch list instead of the noteworthy performances imo. 

He's trending hard in the right direction, but he started out with a low profile. If he keeps up this pace, he'll get there eventually.

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I think some kids like Xavier Brown and Mason Moore will emerge from LCA. The covid win at Belfry last week hurt their stats. If your looking at play on both sides of the ball Mason Moore has to be in the conversation. Kid does it all...Interesting list and glad to see some new names added to the mix and some familiar names not in the mix. 

One thing I try to do to when evaluating a player is to compare the level of competition they are playing against. A lot of kids can show out against marginal opponents. 

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4 hours ago, DevilMayCare said:

He's trending hard in the right direction, but he started out with a low profile. If he keeps up this pace, he'll get there eventually.

Agreed, JH had an underwhelming record last year, but if an outsider looks closer at the schedule, they'd see their record improved as the season went on...but to your point, I don't think Coach Preston had a bell cow last year, but he sure has stepped up to the plate this season. Curious to see if he gets any looks! 

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