Freshmen making an early impact on local football

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By Mike Farner

 SHEPHERDSVILLE - I can’t tell you the number of times over the past 30-odd years that I’ve heard about the next great football player in the county.

Normally, I just smile and nod. I’ve heard it all before. The best thing to do is to stay positive and agree. The news is often more believable when it comes from a third party and not the parents, or grandparents, of the player in question.

Certainly, some of the names have been right on the money. Other times the players never lived up to the hype. Some never wanted to live up to the headlines.

One of the most important things about this job is perspective. You need a lot of that when it comes to pre-high school age athletes.

There are also those youth football standouts that become fine high school basketball players. It can also work in reverse.

Football is a little different than any other sport in the county from my perspective in that I type the youth football results for about 12 weeks each fall. I see a lot of names and a lot of numbers of some very young players. Many of them never reach even the high school spotlight. That is just the way youth sports works. That is not a bad thing. Just the way it is

We’re also talking about mainly running backs and quarterbacks when it comes to youth league players who are getting all the publicity. Those numbers are easy to quantify. It’s not so easy for lineman or even receivers, since there is very limited passing in the youth league.

The last ‘can’t miss’ name to come through the youth football league was Dalton Cissell. He really was that good. He went on to be a standout on some very good North Bullitt football teams.

Then, there was a lull for a couple of years. That is not a bad thing. Sometimes quantity is better than quality when it comes to football.

But, for the past few years, three names started to gather a buzz in the county. There was Austin Colvin at Pleasant Grove, Mitchell Allen at Overdale and Trevor Carnell at Cedar Grove. Each was putting up impressive numbers.

In all fairness, it just worked out that each of the three ended up at a different area high school. Colvin is at Bullitt East, Allen at North Bullitt and Carnell at Bullitt Central.

Amazingly, all three are already having an impact on their new teams. Carnell is the only one ‘starting’ at this point and that is in the secondary at Bullitt Central. Still, he has taken a few snaps at quarterback and even more snaps at running back, scoring a pair of touchdowns already.

Actually, all three of the youngsters are capable of seeing action on either side of the ball.

At some point, 12 to 15 of their classmates are going to have to develop into good high school football players for the three to really leave a mark on their programs.

It’s going to be fun watching each of the three develop over the next four years.