2021 Football Preview: Top underclassmen Butler County football players to watch for this fall

Charles Chaney
Butler County Times Gazette

Football season is right around the corner for the state of Kansas, with kickoff only 41 days away, we are jumping into our football preview with new information throughout the weeks leading up to the season. 

We spoke to coaches from other teams. We talked to head coaches and freshman coaches. We even reached out to teammates to see who they think may step up big for the varsity teams. In that list, we found a bunch of underclassmen players who could see significant playing time for their respective teams. 

This is Part I of a six-part football preview with Butler County. You can view the tentative schedule here. It will be update with links as the previews come out.

Here are the top underclassmen football in Butler County to watch for this season:

Andover Central

Kendall Diller (58) saw playing time as a freshman on an already stout Jaguar defense. He'll see more time as a sophomore.

Kendall Diller

Offensive Line/Defensive Line, Sophomore

In an already experience line, Diller could provide an eye into the future and depth as the season goes on.

Kyle Newsom

Tight End/Linebacker, Sophomore

Newsom's will have to earn his time but could be like Diller, can provide some depth for the defensive side.

Drew Wilborn

Kicker/Wide Receiver/Defensive Back, Sophomore

With the graduation of Chase White, Wilborn could be a nice replacement in the place-kicker position.

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Gavin Kiser (9) is expected to be a big contributor to the Augusta Orioles this season

Gavin Kiser

Quarterback, Sophomore

Jett Hand's graduation has opened the door for sophomore Gavin Kiser to step into the quarterback role.

Cooper Jay

Offensive line, Sophomore

At 6-3, 275 lbs., the Oriole sophomore be the projected starting right tackle this season.

Caden Stillwell

Slot, Sophomore

With players like Ely Wilcox graduated, the Orioles will need some one to step up. Expect Stillwell to see extensive time in the slot position in the flexbone for the Orioles.

LJ Riggs

Kicker, Freshman

Like Hand's graduation, when Tyler Kohl's left for school, Riggs is the one the Orioles will eye for his replacement. 


Tucker Gibb

Wide Receiver/Defensive back, Sophomore

Tucker Gibb played a lot as a freshman and will be looked upon as a leader this season. Big moment for Gibb as he was named an All-County top performer in Week 5 last season.

Tucker Gibb (25) stepped up due to injuries for the Bluestem Lions last season. He's expected to be a big piece into this season's defense.

Zane McFall

Offensive line/Defensive line, Sophomore

McFall may lack a little in size but makes up in hard work. He's expected to be a big time contributor to both lines this season.

Ayden Mashaney

Running back/Defensive back, Freshman

Mashaney was a key piece to the middle school team winning some games last season. He'll be looked at to help bring some of that success to the high school side.

Brody Wiening

Fullback/Linebacker, Freshman

Wiening, much like Mashaney will have to get accustomed to the high school level ball quickly. He'll look to make his immediate impact on defense.


Andrew Tien

Offensive line, Sophomore

Tien has been pushing the upperclassmen in the offseason. He'll see a good amount of playing time. 

Cannon McCormack

Running back/Linebacker, Sophomore

McCormack saw limited time last season as a freshman. As a sophomore, he's expected to take on a bigger role. 

Wyatt Oliver

Defensive line, Sophomore

Wyatt Oliver, like Tien, has been pushing the upperclassmen. He'll be playing for minutes this season on the defensive side.

Davin Toney

Offensive line/Defensive line, Sophomore

When talking to the coaching staff, not many have worked harder than Davin in the offseason and it's going to earn him some playing time.

Circle's Connon McCormack will look for key minutes for the Thunderbirds this season


Michael Kielhorn

Outside linebacker, Sophomore

Kielhorn will step into a role that needs to be filled by graduating seniors. He'll primarily play outside backer.

Brock Stiner

Wide Receiver/Defensive back, Sophomore

He's not the biggest guy on the field but Stiner is expected to be a contributor for the Bulldogs this season.

Kyler Moore

Wide Receiver/Defensive back, freshman

If Moore can find a way to get open with consistency, he could see himself getting action on the outside in his first season of varsity action.

Jace Pichler

Linebacker, Sophomore

With the graduation of Hunter Glaves, Pichler has the opportunity to make an immediate impact on defense.

El Dorado

Cole Rickard

Outside Linebacker, Sophomore

With the graduation of Zach Wittenberg, there will be playing time to be had. Rickard could be one of those who steps ups and earns quality minutes.

Trace Fowler will look to gain some serious varsity time for the Wildcats this season

Trace Fowler

Slot, Sophomore

The younger brother of recently graduated Dravin Fowler could see quality playing time in the slot position. 

Bronson Larimer

Special teams, Freshman

Special teams is where you make your mark and from one of the few freshman on the list, that's where Larimer will try to shine. 

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Wyatt Beard

Wide Receiver/Running Back/Defensive Back, Sophomore

While the Mustangs are replacing some key seniors, players like Wyatt Beard, who played as a freshman, will step into leading roles this season.

Louden James

Defensive Line/Linebacker, Sophomore

Expect James to be a player who sees mainly defensive minutes this season for the Mustangs.

Tate Leslie

Wide Receiver/Defensive Back/Quarterback, Sophomore

Leslie is a do-it-all player in this heralded sophomore class for Flinthills. He'll do whatever new head coach Chase Casteel asks.

Brandon Neely

Offensive Line/Defensive Line, Sophomore

Neely will be on the line for a majority of the season. He may see time at special teams as well.

Conner Sigg

Wide Receiver/Tight End/Defensive Back, Sophomore

Sigg will be the player who you'll see on special teams and step into roles to provide depth for the Mustangs.

Kolton Stanfield

Offensive Line/Defensive Line, Sophomore

Stanfield, like Neely, will be an lineman as an every down type of player they need. Whether he starts or not, Stanfield will get his minutes.


Kole Klaassen

Running Back/Outside Linebacker, Freshman

Klaassen is expxected to do big things as a freshman for the up-and-coming Broncos. His size and athleticism has the coaches excited about his potential.

Sterling Lies

Running Back/Defensive Back, Sophomore

Don't let his size fool you, he's going to burst through the hole and has the speed to get down the field. He averaged 10-12 carries as a freshman. 

Carson Jarvis

Linebacker, Sophomore

Jarvis will play exclusively on defense to start the season. He has a high football IQ and has no issues with getting into the tackles. Coaches are putting a lot on his shoulders to lead the defense.

Rose Hill

Milan Colvin

Defensive line, Freshman

Rose Hill is turning into an lineman factory. After sending one to the Big 12 on the offensive side, the Rockets are really high on Colvin.

Hidgon is only a sophmore but his future is bright at Rose Hill

Kallen Higdon

Offensive lineman, Sophomore

Higdon is fighting for an O-Line position this season. While he may not start - and anything can happen in the month leading up to the season -- he'll most likely see playing time.

Keegan Taylor

Offensive lineman, Sophomore

Keegan Taylor is only a sophomore but he's one of four sophomores that are vying for starting positions on the offensive line. Early odds not Taylor as the favorite but it could be a line by committee with the depth they're developing.

Conner Wallis

Quarterback/Outside linebacker, Sophomore

While fighting for a spot on the defensive side, he's pushing senior Lane Gardner for the quarterback position on the offensive side. 

Jace Evans

Outside linebacker, Sophomore

Evans and other sophomore Wallis will battle for the outside linebacker position but will most likely share time.

Ayden Klingenberg

Offensive lineman, Sophomore

Klingenberg is another of the huge sophomore class for the Rockets on the line. No one will doubt their depth.

Dawson McNaul

Offensive lineman, Sophomore

McNaul is another tackle that is looking for starting time. He's battling the four others for that spot.

Kulton Richwine

Offensive lineman, Sophomore

Look for Richwine to push for a spot at center and provide solid depth for the Rockets this season.

Andover said they had no qualifying underclassmen. 

Charles Chaney has been the Sports Editor for the Butler County Times-Gazette since Aug. 2019. You can reach him at cchaney@butlercountytimesgazette.com or on Twitter at @ChuckChaneyBCTG.