Player Picks to Click - Week 6

Phillipsburg OL prepares to take on Ellis. (Photo by Rachel Martin)
By: John Baetz; Hayden Barber; Sean Boston; Dion Clisso; Matt Gilmore; Chet Kuplen; Brent Maycock, Conor Nicholl
Oct 3, 2018

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In our Picks to Click, we feature eight players or units from across the state that we feel will have breakout performances on Friday night.

This season, we’ve assembled a team of eight media members across the state to each select one player (or unit) each week.  We will track the cumulative statistics of our selections throughout the season similar to fantasy scoring.  

Picks to Click contributors for the 2018 season include: John Baetz (Kansas Pregame Magazine); Hayden Barber (Wichita Eagle); Sean Boston (KSKZ-Radio); Dion Clisso (; Matt Gilmore (; Chet Kuplen (Sports in Kansas); Brent Maycock (Topeka Capital Journal); and Conor Nicholl (

Check back next Thursday to see our picks for Week 7, and how the players performed that we picked the week prior. See the bottom of this article for details.

Cameron Burt, WR, Blue Valley North  (Clisso)

Burt (6-4, 200) has developed in to the top receiving target for Mustangs this season. Through five games, Burt has equaled his 2017 output with 30 receptions, but has 564 receiving yards and nine touchdowns. Last season, Burt caught 30 passes for 404 yards and three scores.

Burt has caught at least one touchdown pass in each game this season, and had three touchdowns and 140 receiving yards in the Mustangs’ 52-42 win over Blue Valley West. That is the game that Blue Valley North played without senior quarterback Graham Mertz. Mertz returned last week in a win over Mill Valley, and connected with Burt six times for 76 yards and two scores.

Burt will most certainly get the 32 yards this week to put him over 1,000 receiving yards in his career. The Mustangs will go for a third straight win on Friday when they host Blue Valley Southwest.

Dalen Kistner, QB, Hartford (Kuplen)

Dalen Kistner of Hartford has enjoyed a lot of success this season as he has passed for 1,171 yards and 13 touchdowns in the Jaguars first five games. Kistner is passing for 239.2 yards per game. He should see some success through the air and on the ground against winless Marais des Cygnes Valley this week.

After five weeks of the season, Kistner ranks second in 8-man passing yardage on our Sports in Kansas leaderboards, second only to Garrett Burden of Medicine Lodge (1,272 yards). Kistner had 375 yards passing, 94 yards rushing and six total touchdowns last week. His most impressive stat was 34 tackles in the loss against Wakefield. While I considered taking him as a defensive player this week, I'll stick with him on offense. 

Jace Mackley, QB, Weskan  (Nicholl)

Weskan junior Jace Mackley earned Kpreps six-man all-state honors last fall at quarterback. This year, he has helped the Coyotes to a 2-2 start. Weskan has averaged 52 points a game this season.

After a bye last week, Weskan has a key home matchup with Golden Plains (5-0) this Friday. Mackley has completed 91 of 131 passes for 1,045 yards with a 19/4 TD/INT ratio. Four receivers have between 18 and 21 catches. He has 28 rushes for 193 yards and three scores.

Two years ago, Weskan captured the inaugural six-man title. Last season, the Coyotes lost to Golden Plains in the regular season, 59-12, and then beat the Bulldogs, 44-27, in the consolation game to take third.

Wyatt Pedigo, RB, Hoisington (Maycock)

Pedigo missed Hoisington's season-opener, a blowout loss to Class 3A No. 4 Pratt, but has made up for lost time in the four games since. In leading the Cardinals to four straight wins, Pedigo has rushed for 914 yards and 14 touchdowns.

The junior back, who also is a returning state wrestling champion, torched Larned for 323 yards and five scores and is coming off putting up 283 yards and four scores against Ellsworth.

Hoisington will take on Minneapolis on Thursday night in a game moved up one day due to the threat of weather. The Lions gave up 300 yards on the ground to Beloit earlier this year.

Taylon Peters, RB, Salina Central  (Barber)

Salina Central running back Taylon Peters is in the midst of an outstanding senior season. Peters has rushed for 981 yards and 13 touchdowns through five games, and most importantly, his Mustangs sit at 4-1 an amount the top three seeds on the west side of Class 5A.

Last Friday, Peters celebrated his birthday by rushing for 285 yards and three touchdowns as Salina Central beat Haysville Campus, 48-17. This week, the Mustangs will travel to Newton to take on the Railers (2-3).

Salina Central has been one of the state’s biggest surprises this season under new coach Mark Sandbo. The Mustangs entered the 2018 season on an 18-game losing streak.

Phillipsburg Offensive Line (Boston)

The Panthers have been one of the most dominant programs over the past few years and a big part of that success has been how productive their offense has been. The Panthers have scored at least 30 points in all five games thus far this season and will have a good shot at reaching that mark again on Friday night against Ellsworth (1-4).

Ellsworth gave up 48 points and 486 yards of offense to Hoisington last week. Hoisington and Phillipsburg have two pretty similar offenses with a lot of firepower, so look for Phillipsburg to put up 40+ points on Ellsworth and it will all start up front with the lineman to clear the routes to the end zone.

Jack Roberts, QB, Shawnee Mission South  (Baetz)

A big reason Shawnee Mission South is in the midst of one of their best seasons in years is the play of senior quarterback Jack Roberts. The 6-4, 185-pound dual-threat QB has passed for 584 yards and nine touchdowns through five games to go along with 624 rushing yards and three more scores. His mix of size and speed is garnering interest from college programs including Emporia State and Missouri Western. Last weekend, Roberts took a visit to Wyoming. Also one of the state's top javelin throwers, Roberts could be poised for a breakout game against Lawrence.

Wichita Northwest Offensive Line (Gilmore)

Since a 23-22 victory over defending 5A champion Bishop Carroll to open the season, Wichita Northwest has averaged nearly 56 points per game. The Grizzlies are also statistically the state’s top offense in averaging 495 yards of total offense each time out. That’s nothing new under coach Steve Martin. The Grizzlies have consistently been among the top offensive units in the state and set the state record for average total yards per game in 2016 with a 546.8 average.

We know about the Grizzlies multitude of playmakers including Breece Hall, Regan Jones, and Roy Johnson, but the guys up front have been getting the job done as well. Northwest’s offensive line played well last week in putting up 539 yards and 55 points against a Kapaun Mount Carmel defense that was allowing only 7 points per game.

On Friday, Wichita Northwest travels to Garden City to take on the Buffaloes. Garden City has won two straight games since an 0-3 start that saw them surrender an average of 39 points per game. This will be the seventh meeting between Grizzlies and Buffaloes in the past six seasons. Wichita Northwest has won four of those six meetings, including both meetings last year. In those head-to-head matchups, the Grizzlies have averaged 38 points per game.

Week 5 Picks to Click results (scoring):

Nate Burdette, QB, Maranatha Academy – Burdette completed 15 of 21 passes for 391 yards and eight touchdowns in the Eagles’ 62-16 win over Chase County. Burdette connected with Brock West 12 times for 382 yards and all eight scores. Burdette also rushed for 43 yards and a score. (Nicholl – 97 pts)

Jahawn Byrd, RB, Leavenworth – Byrd rushed for 134 yards on 26 carries, but the Pioneers fell 49-19 to rival Lansing. Byrd increased his season rushing total to 759 yards. (Clisso – 13 pts)

Zac Dressler, RB, Douglass – Dressler rushed for 135 yards and two touchdowns in the Bulldogs’ 28-6 win over Eureka. Dressler also caught a 16-yard pass and completed a pass for 3 yards. (Kuplen – 26 pts)

Hunter Igo, QB, Derby – In his first start, Igo passed for 80 yards and three touchdowns and rushed for 139 yards and two more scores. Derby blasted Salina South, 60-7. (Barber – 51 pts)

Tim Lambert, RB, Smoky Valley – Lambert rushed for 172 yards and three touchdowns and added a 15-yard catch in the Vikings’ 46-14 win over Clay Center. (Boston – 36 pts)

Pratt Offensive Line – The Greenback offensive line led the way for 339 rushing yards and 103 passing yards including five touchdowns. Pratt defeated Kingman, 42-0.  (Baetz – 23 pts)

Dylan Spresser, RB, Golden Plains – Spresser rushed for 230 yards and five touchdowns on only nine carries in the Bulldogs’ 63-14 win over Natoma.  (Gilmore – 53 pts)

Lane Whisennand, QB, Elkhart – Whisennand rushed for 185 yards and three touchdowns and passed for 162 more yards and two scores in Elkhart’s 47-6 win over Meade.  (Maycock – 64 pts)

Standings for the 2018 season through Week 5:

  1. Brent Maycock, Topeka Capital Journal                                219 points
  2. Sean Boston, KSKZ-Radio                                                    192 points
  3. Chet Kuplen, Sports in Kansas                                              192 points
  4. Conor Nicholl, Kpreps                                                            192 points
  5. Hayden Barber, Wichita Eagle-Varsity Kansas                      173 points
  6. John Baetz, Kansas Pregame Magazine                               166 points
  7. Matt Gilmore,                                                     138 points
  8. Dion Clisso,                                                      98 points

 2018 Picks to Click

- The objective will be to have the most cumulative points over the course of the season.

- Participants may select a quarterback, running back, WR/TE, offensive line or a defensive player each week.

- Everyone must pick a WR/TE, offensive line and defensive player at least once.

- Points will be rewarded only for the player's offensive or defensive stats, depending on how you designate the player that week. For instance, if you pick a running back then you will not receive any of his points for defense.

Scoring system


- 1 point for every 10 yards passing, rushing or receiving from a quarterback, running back or wide receiver

- 6 points for every passing, rushing or receiving touchdown

Offensive line

- 1 point for every 50 yards gained as an offense

- 3 points for every offensive touchdown

Defensive player

- 2 points for every tackle

- 4 points for every INT, sack or fumble recovery

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