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BluegrassPreps.com Mr. Football Watchlist (9/13)

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Zeismer Boils Over And Fisher Continues To Reel'em In

No defensive position had a bigger Week 4 than edge rushers. Tommy Zeismer engaged in trench warfare with Henderson County's menacing offensive front and emerged victorious with his best performance of the season. The UK commit came up huge with three tackles for loss and two sacks, plus a fumble recovery during a pivotal stretch in the second half that allowed Boyle County to fend off a game Hendo squad. 

Thirty minutes southwest in Nicholasville, Oryend Fisher was being a thorn in the side of East Jessamine's offense. He recorded 4.5 tackles for loss (including two sacks), forced a fumble, and recovered two to help propel Great Crossing to victory. That gives the recent WVU commit four straight games with multiple sacks to start the season and pushes him to the top of the state leader board. Fisher, Zeismer, Micah Carter, Saadiq Clements, and Jamarrion Harkless have made defensive line the glamour position for the senior class of '23.


District Mates Serve As Beacons In The Dimly Lit Quarterback Room Of '23

D-Line notwithstanding, the title of 'glamour position' is typically reserved for quarterback. But this season, that would be a stretch. The current crop of senior signal callers doesn't generate the buzz we've seen in recent years. The two best candidates to prove that previous statement foolish, reside in the same district and were at it again in Week 4.

Kenyon Goodin dazzled in a 43-37 defeat against Spencer County, amassing 387 total yards and five touchdowns. Purely from a Mr. Football standpoint, he passed his biggest test, to date. The loss stings, though. This was an opportunity to make a case for being a transcendent talent, able to carry his team to victory against quality opposition. There will be other chances, but this one was in his grasp until it slipped away in the fourth quarter. 

With his own shootout to contend with, Jacob Jones got West Jessamine to the finish line first against Harrison County, 49-41. He equalled Goodin's five touchdowns, while passing for 205 yards and running for 157. He ranks fourth in the state in rushing yards, but sleep on his arm at your own risk. If you want to see a next level throw, scroll down and check out the highlight reel from this game at the :50 mark. He throws a 30 yard bullet, on the run, nearly out bounds, to the back of the endzone to hit his receiver in stride. Some things you can't teach. In Jones' case, it's in the genes.

Thoroughbreds Strut Their Stuff In The Heart Of Horse Country

Historically, Lexington Catholic is known for its lineage of great quarterbacks. But it's the other end of the Knights' pitch and catch dynamic that's creating ripples in the Mr. Football waters this year. Max DeGraff has been productive and efficient to an absurd degree so far this season. He ranks first in the state in touchdown receptions, second in receiving yards, and averages 35.6 yards per catch. Ten of his sixteen catches have gone for scores. Not many have been up to the task of covering him, including Pleasure Ridge Park last week. DeGraff got open for 146 yards and three touchdowns on five catches in LexCath's 42-19 win. DeGraff, who handles kicking duties for his team, made good on all six extra points to showcase his multifaceted skill set.

PRP's deficiencies were exposed again in defeat, but Jakob Dixon was more than LexCath's secondary could handle in the first half. He set a new career standard with 188 yards on eight receptions and two touchdowns, including a 56 yarder on the first play from scrimmage. Watching him run through and away from Catholic's secondary makes you wonder why it took so long for him to draw Power 5 interest. He passes the eye test in almost every way.

With the crew at @Big Things Kentucky on hand to call the game, Dixon and DeGraff put on a show.


Odds And Ends

- Continuing to display versatility like no other, Mitchell Berger ran for two scores, recorded a safety, and kicked all four Beechwood extra points in a 30-7 win over Simon Kenton. He leads the state in scoring, accounting for nearly 23 points per game by himself. 

- Owensboro suffered a disappointing setback to O-Cath, with Kenyata Carbon struggling to find running room. Still yet, he was a bright spot for the Devils in defeat, accounting for 147 total yards and two touchdowns, as well as snagging his first interception of the season. 

- With Raceland hanging around, Charlie Noon sprung loose a punt return to create a little breathing room for the Bluebirds. It was an otherwise quiet outing for the Highlands playmaker, who contributed just twenty yards on five offensive touches.


Players Highlighted This Week:

Tommy Ziesmer (Edge, Boyle County)

Season to date: 21 tackles | 7 tackles for loss | 2 sacks | 1 forced fumble


Oryend Fisher (Edge, Great Crossing)

Season to date: 27 tackles | 13.5 tackles for loss | 9 sacks | 1 forced fumble and 2 recoveries


Kenyon Goodin (QB/DB, Collins)

Season to date: 59/85 for 881 yards and 13 touchdowns with 1 interception | 428 rushing yards and 7 touchdowns | 1 pick-six

Highlights: vs. Spencer County


Jacob Jones (QB, West Jessamine)

Season to date: 56/93 for 775 yards and 10 touchdowns with 1 interception | 729 rushing yards and 7 touchdowns

Highlights: vs. Harrison County


Max DeGraff (WR/K, Lexington Catholic

Season to date: 16 receptions for 569 yards and 10 touchdowns | 13/14 on extra points | 2 field goals


Jakob Dixon (WR, Pleasure Ridge Park)

Season to date: 19 receptions for 463 yards and 5 touchdowns


Mitchell Berger (RB/LB, Beechwood)

Season to date: 66 rushes for 621 yards and 11 touchdowns | 8 receptions for 127 yards and 2 touchdowns | 1 forced fumble and 2 recovered | 8/8 on extra points | 1 field goal


Kenyata Carbon (ATH, Owensboro)

2021: 76 carries for 571 yards and 8 touchdowns | 1 receiving touchdown | 1 interception


Charlie Noon (ATH, Highlands)

Season to date: 24 receptions for 275 yards and 2 touchdowns | 10 rushes for 109 yards | 1 kick return touchdown

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Week 5's Mr. Football Spotlight Games

Beechwood vs. Covington Catholic - One of the state's biggest games this week, regardless of Mr. Football implications. Cam Hergott ran the Tigers to victory last year. Can Berger do the same?

St. Xavier vs. Elder (OH) - Carter faces what will be one of his stiffest challenges of the season against a Panthers squad that has been really good up front this year.

Male vs. Trinity - Swinney went for over 200 yards in this game last year, then scored six touchdowns against them in the playoffs. With Male struggling offensively, the Rocks may load the box in an effort to stifle him.

Boyle County  vs. Bowling Green - Zeismer looks to build on a strong showing last week. He gave the Purples problems last year in a shutout by the Boyle defense.

Pikeville vs. Belfry - Following a bye week, Birchfield runs head-on into one of the mountain's most heated rivalries and a possible reset for his candidacy. 

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