A pair of Eastern Jackson County lineman have a chance to take home the top award for linemen and linebackers in the metro area.
Blue Springs senior two-way lineman Daniel Parker and William Chrisman defensive end Daniel Carson were both named finalists for the Buck Buchanan Award, as the finalists for the Simone Awards were announced Tuesday at Arrowhead Stadium.
The field of 10 semifinalists was narrowed down to four finalists for the five major awards – the Simone Award (top player in the metro area), Buchanan, Frank Fontana Award (top small-class player in the metro area), Bobby Bell Award (top small-class lineman or linebacker) and the Otis Taylor Award (top receiver or tight end).
Finalists for the Simone Award are Park Hill receiver Ronnie Bell (also a finalist for the Taylor Award), Lee’s Summit West running back Phillip Brooks, Blue Valley North quarterback Graham Mertz and Staley quarterback John Raybourn. The winners will be announced on Dec. 5 at the school of the Simone Award winner.
Parker and Carson repeat as Buchanan Award finalists. Parker, who has verbally committed to Missouri, has helped lead Blue Springs (11-3) to the Class 6 runner-up finish, playing both on the offensive line and defensive line. He was named to the Class 6 all-state offensive line last year and helped lead the Wildcats to 4,827 total yards this season and averaged more than 212 yards rushing a game. On defense, Parker was a force up front on defense with 46 tackles, including 22 tackles for loss and 17 sacks, and three forced fumbles, and was named the Suburban Big Seven Defensive Player of the Year.
Chrisman’s Carson was named the Suburban Middle Six Defensive Player of the Year and has more than 20 offers from major college football programs, including Ohio State, Missouri, Texas, Notre Dame, Oklahoma and Miami. He recorded 73 tackles and had six sacks and 17 tackles for loss for the Bears, who finished 7-4.
Three other Eastern Jackson County players were named semifinalists but failed to make the cut for the finalists.
Grain Valley senior quarterback Tate Collum was a semifinalist for the Fontana Award. The four finalists, though, were St. Joseph Lafayette’s Diego Bernard, Platte County’s Tanner Clarkson, Bishop Miege’s Carter Putz and Center’s Amaun Ryan.
Blue Springs seniors Tre Wheaton and Caleb Marquez were both semifinalists for the Otis Taylor Award, but didn’t make the final cut. Bell, Raytown’s Dominic Gicinto, Blue Valley Northwest’s Jackson Heath and Mill Valley’s Logan Talley were named finalists.
The finalists for the Bobby Bell Award are Bishop Miege’s Dylan Downing, DeSoto’s Marshall Kellner, Harrisonville’s Nick Kruse and Platte County’s Michael Smith.