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The Kansas City Chiefs have announced the Coach of the Week honors for the first and second weeks of the 2023 season. The Week One awards went to Platte County Head Coach Bill Utz (Missouri) and Blue Valley Southwest Head Coach Anthony Orrick (Kansas). The Week Two awards go to Van Horn Head Coach Roshaad Byrd (Missouri) and Louisburg Head Coach Drew Harding (Kansas).
As a result of this honor, the awarded schools will receive a $500 grant from the Hunt Family Foundation. Additionally, the coaches will be presented a congratulatory commemorative Super Bowl LVII coin and a certificate recognizing their selection. These coaches are now qualified for the Eric Driskell Coach of the Year Award, which will be voted on later this fall. The Eric Driskell Coach of the Year Award is selected by a panel comprised of the Missouri and Kansas Boards from the Greater Kansas City Football Coaches Association.
Platte County got its second straight win, beating rival Smithville 43-36 with a touchdown in the final seconds to take the Week One honors. The Pirates opened the season with a 21-18 win over Kearney. They now sit at 3-0 on the season after a 17-0 shutout against North Kansas City. Utz credited his team’s hard work through their first few weeks.
“It is a tremendous honor to be recognized by the Kansas City Chiefs,” Utz said. “The award reflects the work and commitment that our coaches, players, and community have put into our program. We are blessed to have a great group of young men, and we are very thankful and humbled to receive this recognition.”
In their first game of the 2023 season, Blue Valley Southwest got its first-ever win over Blue Valley with a 33-19 victory Friday night. It was the Timberwolves first defeat of the Tigers since the school’s opening in 2010. Orrick said this win was a reflection of the work put in by everyone in the program.
“This was a great team win,” Orrick said. “A lot of guys contributed and made big plays. Our staff and players have worked extremely hard this offseason and it’s nice to receive recognition for it.”
Van Horn moved to 3-0 with a 49-6 win over district rival William Chrisman. The Falcons have improved each of the last two seasons under Byrd, finishing 7-4 in 2022. Byrd credits the work everyone in the program has put in over the last few years.
“For me, it means a lot,” Byrd said. “It’s one of the many steps in the right direction for our program. It gives others an opportunity to see some of the team’s accomplishments and the dedication to hard work that our athletes are putting in and allows themselves to see some early success and continue to strive for greatness.”
Louisburg defeated Paola 35-20 to move to 2-0 on the season. The Wildcats opened the season with a win over Heritage, 48-14. This is the second season for Drew Harding as head coach and he led his team to an 8-2 record last season. Harding praised his entire program’s efforts for their early season success.
“We would like to thank the Kansas City Chiefs for supporting high school athletics in the community,” Harding said. “This award is definitely a team award and not a ‘me’ award. Without assistant coaches implementing the game plan and the players executing it on the game field there is no award. We are excited as a program to accept this award as recognition of the work that the entire program has put in.”
In its 27th season, the 2023 High School Coach of the Week is a joint initiative of the Kansas City Chiefs and the National Football League. This program is designed to recognize and reward Kansas City area high school coaches for superior performance on a weekly basis while honoring individuals who are shaping today’s youth and tomorrow’s leaders.
The Kansas City Chiefs partner with PrepsKC to select Coaches of the Week from Missouri and Kansas each week. PrepsKC is the only complete multimedia coverage of high school football in the Kansas City Metro. For the last 14 years it has combined a dynamic web site, weekly magazine and comprehensive weekly radio show. More information about PrepsKC, including scores, schedules and coverage can be found at www.prepskc.com.
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