Aurora tight end Nate Boerkircher (87) is one of 13 area players who will participate in Saturday’s Shrine Bowl.


Caleb Francl

Grand Island Senior High

RB/LB, 6-0, 180

The South Dakota State preferred walk-on led the Islanders with 79 tackles (32 solo, 47 assisted) during his senior year.

He also led the team in rushing with 694 yards on 111 carries with 12 touchdowns.

Isaac Gleason


TE/LB, 6-2, 195

Gleason was the top area receiver in 8-man football during his senior season.

He had an area leading 50 receptions, tied for the area lead with 17 touchdowns and amassed 795 yards.

CJ Hoevet


OL/DL, 6-0, 270

Hoevet was part of a line that helped Ord come out with a dangerous dual-threat offense over the past two very successful seasons.

This past season, Hoevet helped led the way for the Chants to have a 1,500-yard rusher (Tommy Stevens) and a 1,400-yard passer (Zach Smith).

Ace McKinnis

Grand Island Senior High

WR/DB, 5-8, 150

The Nebraska Wesleyan recruit helped an opportunistic Islander defense feast on turnovers.

McKinnis picked off four passes and recovered two fumbles, returning those six turnovers for a combined 101 yards.

Rans Sanders


WR/DB, 6-0, 165

The Cloud County Community College baseball recruit will take to the football field one last time.

A two-way standout for the Vikings, Sanders passed for 1,621 yards and 13 touchdowns and rushed for 837 yards and 13 scores as a senior while also making 58 tackles.

Jackson Seward

St. Paul

RB/DB, 5-11, 175

Seward helped the Wildcats go 11-1 and advance to the Class C-2 state playoff semifinals.

He was the second-leading rusher with 633 yards and eight touchdowns. Seward recorded 40 tackles and was 5-for-5 in field goals and 32-for-39 on extra points as St. Paul’s placekicker.


Nate Boerkircher


TE, 6-5, 220

If the South team quarterbacks need to find a sure, reliable target, they have one at tight end.

Boerkircher provided the Huskies with a threat to always move the chains when needed, and he’ll look to continue his career after the Shrine Bowl as a walk-on at Nebraska.

Evan Johnson

Adams Central

QB, 6-3, 205

The Nebraska Wesleyan recruit is one of two quarterbacks on the South roster.

Johnson wrapped up his career holding every Patriots passing record for a game, season and career. His 540 completions and 7,632 passing yards also broke a pair of Class C-1 career records, the latter previously owned by Scott Frost.

Ryan Marlatt


OL, 6-3, 275

Despite battling injuries throughout his high school career, Marlatt established himself as a dominant lineman whenever he was out on the field.

This will be the final football game for Marlatt, who is planning on attending the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Elijah “Chi” Onate


OL, 6-4, 270

It was hard to miss the Chadron State recruit whenever the Buffaloes took to the field on Friday nights.

Onate provided a major challenge for opposing linemen whenever they took on an overall young Gibbon squad last fall.

Michael Rutherford

Central City

CB, 5-10, 155

The Hastings College recruit made an impact on both sides of the ball for the Bison.

Defensively, he was second on the team with 74 tackles as a senior and picked off three passes. As a quarterback, Rutherford passed for 1,876 yards and 10 touchdowns while also leading Central City in rushing with 757 yards and 16 TDs.

Keithan Stafford


RB, 6-0, 180

Stafford was a big reason that the Cardinals’ offense put up some big numbers over the past couple of seasons.

The Wayne State recruit picked up 1,405 yards rushing as a senior for a second 1,000-yard year. He had 14 touchdowns to go along with 13 as a junior.

Keaton Van Housen

Osceola/High Plains

RB, 5-11, 180

The Class D-1 state champion Stormdog will get his first taste of 11-man football at the field where he will continue his college career at UNK.

Van Housen finished his senior season with 2,283 yards rushing on 302 carries with 34 touchdowns. In five playoff games, he had 147 carries for 1,096 yards and 15 touchdowns.

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