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Mayes County Area

Salina Wildcats Football Preview – Presented by Hooker’s Sports Grill

SALINA WILDCATS  

Coach: CLAYTON SAIZ  

Last 8 Years:
2021 – 5-5

2020 – 4-7

2019 – 2-8

2018 – 5-6

2017 – 6-5

2016 – 5-6

2015 – 4-6

2014 – 6-5 

OFFENSE

First year head coach at Salina, Clayton Saiz, is very excited and eager to see how his Wildcats perform and adapt this year to a new spread offensive scheme. Salina returns nine offensive starters in 2022 and showed positive signs in spring practice. Quarterback Conner Johnson (6-1, 165, Jr.) threw for 1,169 yards and 13 touchdowns in 2021. After hitting the gym in the offseason and getting more comfortable with the new offense, Johnson is poised to have a great 2022 campaign. In the backfield Jack Wilkins (5-11, 175, Sr.) and Payton Burns (5-10, 185, Sr.) will split carries creating a dynamic dose of thunder and lightning. Last year the duo combined for 1,500 yards and 15 touchdowns. Carson Gaskins (6-2, 245, Sr.) returns for his senior season having previously started in 27 games for the Wildcats. In 2022 he will be relied upon to demonstrate leadership and anchor the offensive line. Wide outs Gavin Montgomery (5-8, 170, Sr.) and Teagen Byrd (5-8, 150, So.) will be expected to play a variety of roles after combining for 250 rushing yards, 300 receiving yards, and a handful of scores. The Wildcats want to get their playmakers the ball in space and make defenders miss.   

DEFENSE

Six starters return to Salina’s base 3-4 defensive scheme. Wilkins and Burns will be making appearances on both sides of the ball as they did in 2021 when they combined for nearly 150 tackles. Wilkins was a turnover machine in 2021 and intercepted three passes and recovered a fumble.  With his speed and vision, he’ll also make appearances on special teams returning kicks. The most experienced group on defense for the Wildcats is the defensive line which returns all three starters. The three big bodies of Greg Willis (5-10, 210, Sr.), Payton House (5-9, 200, Jr.), and Kolby Chancellor (5-10, 215, Sr.) combined for 100 tackles in 2021. Treyton Bailey (6-0, 170, Sr.) will be a leader in the secondary after a 2021 campaign in which he accumulated 30 tackles along with an interception and fumble recovery.

Schedule:

8-26 – at Quapaw

9-1 – vs. Locust Grove

9-9 – vs. Chouteau

9-23 – at Rejoice Christian

9-30 – vs. Sequoyah Claremore

10-7 – vs. Adair

10-13 – vs. Pawhuska

10-21 – at Caney Valley

10-28 – vs. Nowata

11-4 – at Vinita

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