Archive for Thursday, June 14, 2001

Harris tough in border war all-star game

June 14, 2001

Kansas won the border war with Missouri in the Mo-Kan Football Classic last Thursday in Olathe, but Olathe North's Darren Sproles took care of most of the battles. Well, they were more like massacres.

Sproles, who will play at Kansas State in the fall, had 10 carries for 162 yards and three touchdowns in Kansas' 34-7 win in the 10th annual all-star event. Sproles was voted Kansas MVP.

Eudora also had a large presence in the game at the Olathe District Activity Center. Coach Aaron Barnett was the head coach for Kansas, and outgoing senior Brian Harris ran in the backfield with Sproles.

Harris was second in rushing behind Sproles and tied for second overall. He had 12 carries for 22 yards. Liberty's Joel Sambursky also had 22 yards on five carries for Missouri.

Barnett said Harris' performance in the game and throughout the week of practice was good.

"Everyone on the team commented on how tough of a kid Brian is," Barnett said about Harris. "He should hold his head up. He had some nice runs."

Harris, though, was more critical of himself.

"I didn't have that great of a night," Harris said. "I had a banged-up shoulder and cut the wrong way a few times. I got nailed on one play, too."

Harris said the all-star game was good preparation for his career at Benedictine. Four other Kansas team members, all on defense, will play at Benedictine as well.

"It was great playing with future teammates," Harris said. "I had fun watching guys play, especially Sproles."

Piper's John Beck, who will play at Kansas University in the fall, hit a 54-yard field goal in the first quarter and a 41-yarder in the fourth. Beck set up from 61 yards out earlier in the fourth, but Missouri jumped offsides and Kansas got a fresh set of downs.

Also playing for Kansas were Basehor-Linwood's Mike Peerson and Jake Davis. Peerson, a linebacker, will play football at Fort Scott next fall; Davis, a defensive lineman, is undecided.

Kansas has won eight of the 10 Mo-Kan games. Barnett said the togetherness of the team was important for this year's squad.

"It helps when you care about the guys you're next to," Barnett said.

The Eudora coach also said he surrounded himself with a strong supporting cast of coaches and great players, especially Sproles.

"As advertised, he's a first-class player," Barnett said. "He's a first-class person, too."

Also coaching with Barnett were Bill Pakarak (Lansing), John McCall (Olathe North), Todd Dain (Shawnee Mission East), Brad Scott (De Soto); Kris Kehl (Louisburg); Keff Bauer (Blue Valley North); Scott Milkowart (Washington); Mike Smith (Paola); and Brad Cross (Chisholm Trail Jr. High).

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