May 27, 2022

Butler and Dodge picked to finish 1-2 in Jayhawk (Audio)

Listen to the full press conference

Garden City, KS (westernkansasnews.com)-Over the past two decades, there has not been a more successful junior college program in the nation than Butler. 

So it was no surprise that the Grizzlies were picked to finish first in the Jayhawk Conference in 2016. 

“I don’t envy our position,” Butler Coach Tim Shaffner said. “It almost makes you think you have to be crazy to coach in this league because it’s so good.”

The surprise has been the resurrection project in Dodge City. In just three seasons, Head Coach Gary Thomas has taken the Conquistadors from the doormats of the conference (seven straight losing seasons before his arrival) to national contenders.

Last season, Dodge City won their first conference title in 32 years. They also won nine games for only the third time in program history and the first time since 1961. 

“Our guys know that we have to move past last season,” Thomas said. “These guys have to make a name for themselves.”

Garden City, who is coming off a 3-8 season, was picked to finish sixth. 

“We are excited about the guys we have coming back,” Broncbusters Head Coach Jeff Sims said. “On defense, we’ve got Delshawn Phillips back at linebacker, a kid who just committed to Arizona. On offense, we have Jayru Campbell back at quarterback.”

The Broncbusters appeared to be in rebuilding mode last year before stunning top-ranked Butler in El Dorado late in the season. 

Preseason Poll

1. Butler

2. Dodge City

3. Hutchinson

4. Coffeyville

5. Highland

6. Garden City

7. Independence

8. Fort Scott