Posted On: 03/29/21 2:16 PM
Friday night I was able to catch a really fun matchup in Neenah, Wisconsin between Stevens Point High School and Neenah High School. Both teams fielded several players that I believe have the ability to play football at the next level, including a couple of kids that I didn’t know about coming in. In my previous article, I gave a summary of how the game played out as a whole. Today, I want to dive into the top players of the game by listing their stats, and then breaking down what they did to earn their spot as a Player of the Game. This isn’t a standard Player of the Game article either. It won’t consistent of just players from the winning team. There are going to be players from both sides. Let’s get started!
Stat Line: 18/30, 166 Pass Yards, 1 TD Warzynski’s Week 1 Highlights
Riley was one of the players that I had underlined as a player I really wanted to see this spring. The 6’3″ 200 lbs QB didn’t disappoint. The best part of his game was how clutch he was. He didn’t have a mind blowing stat line this week, but every time his team needed him he delivered. He drove his team down the field just before halftime with deep and accurate passes that showed off the velocity he can put on the ball and finished the drive with a TD pass. Then in the final minutes of the 4th quarter he was a key factor in driving down the field for the game winning score. I had thought that Riley was going to breakout this spring, but he looks ready to show even more than what I thought he had. No doubt that he is in the conversation for best QB in action this spring.
Stat Line: 15 Total Tackles, 3 Tackles for Loss Borchardt’s Week 1 Highlights
Carter has had a great week. He balled out on Friday night during his first game at OLB, and this morning he announced his commitment to North Dakota State University! If Friday was any suggestion of what NDSU is going to get then these next four years are going to be fun to follow. Carter’s first step explosion off the line and agility made him nearly impossible to block. The size and strength he added in the offseason made him really successful at setting the edge against the run as well, and every time he got the chance he delivered big time hits. His instincts made him already look like a natural at the new position. He trusted what he saw and then he went and made the play. As you can see by the stat line, Carter always knew where the ball was, and had little trouble getting to it.
Cole Kerchefski, RB- 2021
Stat Line: 27 Carries, 132 Rush Yds. 2 TDs, 3 Rec. 8 Receiving Yds. Kerchefski’s Week 1 Highlights
Cole was a new name for me coming into the game, and I left impressed with his game. The 6’ 190 lbs RB showed off the ability to handle the workload as he was the only Stevens Point player with a rushing attempt. Cole also showed the ability to be a three down back. He showed success as an inside and outside runner, he was used in the screen game, and he was able to show that he was a willing and able pass blocker. Cole’s instincts were key to his success as well. He was able to see lanes and set up blocks that allowed him to show off his acceleration, especially on his 46 yard TD rush. His ability to run with power in key moments was huge for Stevens Point too as he was able to plow his way into the endzone for the game winning score from 6 yards out. Based off his Twitter feed, I don’t see any posts relating to college interest. I highly recommend checking him out because he looks like he might be an under the radar steal for a college program.
Tommy Drohner, DB- 2022
Stat Line: 6 Total Tackles, 2 INTs, 1 Pass Defensed Drohner’s Week 1 Highlights
Drohner kept catching my eye over and over on Friday and schools at the next level need to make sure they check him out. He is listed at 5’9″ 160 lbs on his Hudl, but I think he is a little bigger than that now. Whatever his official size is, Tommy used all of it and his closing speed to look like a heat seeking missile in the defensive backfield. On a couple plays, Tommy was able to read the QB perfectly, come off his guy and drop the hammer on a receiver at the catch point. He was able to separate the receiver from the ball on some of those hits too. He wasn’t just a tone setter in the backfield either. Drohner showed that he also has the coverage and ball skills to create turnovers. On the first pick he was able to complete the tip drill and on the second one he was able to go up and high point the ball over Neenah’s 6’4’’ TE. Drohner is a versatile defensive back that teams need to know about.
Ben Raczek, LB- 2022
Stat Line: 18 Total Tackles, 5 Tackles for Loss
Ben was another defender that was everywhere that the ball was. He looks the part of an up and coming LB prospect at 6’1″ 225 lbs. His ability to shed blocks and pick through the trash from his inside LB position caught my eye over and over on Friday night. The strength he played with looks ready for the next level. He was able to repeatedly throw linemen to the side or drive them back and then make the tackle. The inside run wasn’t much of an option all night long for Neenah in big part because of Raczek’s ability to make plays against the run. I wasn’t able to find any film from Week 1 for him, yet. I suggest you make a note and check back.
Stat Line: 15/31, 206 Pass Yds, 1 Pass TD, 15 Carries, 57 Rush Yds, 1 Rush TD
The Iowa Hawkeye long snapper commit was electric with the ball in his hands. The burst to get from 0 to 100 was D1 level and his agility in tight quarters made it very tough to corral him. While his biggest threat was as a runner, Luke was able to make several impact plays with his arm. It was because of his arm that he and Neenah were able to tie the game late in the 4th after a long TD pass and a completion to score the two point conversion. He is going to be a weapon at the next level because that speed at the LS position could lead to game changing plays. I won’t be surprised if they give him a look at receiver at the next level too. He has the athleticism and sub 4.6 speed.
Darius Jones Jr., LB- 2023
Stat Line: 8 Total Tackles
I have made a couple notes to include this kid in our next rankings update for the Class of 2023. The 6’1″ 210 lbs LB had a really nice game at OLB for Neenah. If you just look at the stats it might not seem like he was one of the top performers in the game, but his ability to create pressure on the QB was impressive and consistent. He already shows the strength and speed to be able to bend the edge and make it hard for the OL to block him. As he continues to develop his pass rush moves and grow he could turn into a serious problem at the OLB position for Neenah. He is a defender you are going to want to check out when he gets his film up.
Matt Jung, DB- 2022
Stat Line: 8 Total Tackles, 1 Forced Fumble Jung’s Week 1 Highlights
I was really impressed with this 6’2″ 180 lbs safety. Neenah lined him up at single high safety and that allowed Matt to roam his deep 1/3 and show off his range against the run and short passing game. His film from the week is full of that range being on full display. He will go from 15 yards deep to making the tackle at the line of scrimmage. That range also allowed him to fly downhill and deliver big hits on receivers. On one played he delivered one of those big hits and was able to knock the ball lose and his teammates were able to recover it. You can see how instinctive he is back there at his deep safety position. He trusts what he sees and goes. There is no wasted movement or second guessing in his play.
Stat Line: 8 Rec. 90 Yds, 1 2PT Conv. McCauley’s Week 1 Highlights
There was no doubt about it. Colin was the go to target for Elkin from beginning to end. Colin was able to bring in just over half of the team’s total completions and was able to make a clutch catch on the two point conversion attempt to tie the game late in the 4th quarter. The 5’10” 170 lbs WR was able to find a lot of his success from the slot position. He showed the speed to stretch the field up the seam and flashed late, reliable hands making it very hard for defenders to know when to look back for the ball. Colin also had success in the bubble screen game where he could get the ball in his hands quickly, set up his block, and then make defenders miss from there. Check out the senior’s week one film.