At the beginning of the season, I released a list of the top 10 skill players in the SEMO Conference. Now that the season is over for all but one team, here is an updated version. Of course this is just my opinion, based on what I've seen, read and heard this year. Here were the top 10 skill players in the SEMO Conference.
RB, Cape Central
* Hicks was by far the best player on the best team in the SEMO Conference. He rushed for 1,546 yards and had 543 yards receiving. He even attempted one pass this year -- for a 55-yard touchdown.
And he's even better as a defensive back. If this guy doesn't get the Carr Trophy, the fix is in.
* Stanback was arguably the top running back in the region. He finished with a conference best 2,125 yards on 315 carries, scoring 21 touchdowns. After a solid regular season, Stanback took it to another level in district play, leading the Bluejays to their third straight title. Stanback will go down with the best in a long list of great Charleston running backs.
* The Bearcats put together their best season in over a decade, and Burnett was the biggest reason why, rushing for 1,470 yards. After suffering a knee injury in Week 9, impressively, Burnett sucked it up and played hurt against Fredericktown in the district title game. He scored both of Dexter's touchdowns, leading the Bearcats to a 15-12 win. Burnett has set the bar high for all Dexter backs to come.
WR, Poplar Bluff
* The Mules had somewhat of a disappointing season, but individually, Tony Webb had a tremendous year. He blew away every other receiver in the conference with 60 catches for 1,061 yards, scoring eight TDs.
* Of all the athletes in Hayti's arsenal, Moore is considered to be the most dangerous. The 6-foot-3 junior averaged 17.4 yards per catch, finishing with 573 yards receiving in just nine games.
On Saturday, expect Moore to lead Hayti to the Class 1 state championship.
QB, Cape Central
* Craft was the top quarterback in the area this year, capable of leading the Tigers to victory with either his arm or his legs. He threw for 1,696 yards with incredible accuracy, completing 111-of-176 passes. He also rushed for 437 yards and scored five touchdowns.
* DeWitt was Mr. Everything for the Bulldogs this year. He was the core of Sikeston's offense, leading the Bulldogs to their best season since 1998. He led the team in rushing with 547 yards, scoring nine TDs. He also threw for 771 yards with five TDs. He was an outstanding linebacker, plus he punted and kicked extra points.
* McIntosh was the area's biggest surprise this year. He topped himself game after game, saving his best performances for some of the state's toughest defenses. Despite missing one and a half games, he finished the year with 1,332 yards on 211 carries, scoring 12 TDs.
* Jackson finished as the second leading rusher in the conference, gaining 1,565 yards on 276 carries, scoring 11 touchdowns. He also had 118 yards in receiving.
* Goolsby finished off his outstanding high school football career with a solid senior season. He rushed for 1,251 yards on 218 carries, scoring 12 touchdowns. He also had 71 yards receiving, and was the most feared kick returner around.
OTHER PLAYERS that just missed the cut include Hayti RB Torey Nelson, Portageville RB Antonio Scott, Malden WR Karrington Rogers, NMCC QB Remond Willis, Chaffee WR James Reischman and Caruthersville WR Chris Springer.