For the second straight season, the CBC Cadets are headed to the Missouri Class 6 State Championship Game. CBC took home the 2017 Class 6 State Title with a 31-14 win over Blue Springs last year and will now seek to repeat as state champions as they play Rockhurst High School for the championship in 2018. The school is aiming to claim its third football state championship in school history, as they won it all in 2014 as well as last year. Let us take a look at how CBC got here once again in 2018.
The Cadets started the season off 5-0, highlighted by a week 2 marquee 58-45 win over Illinois Class 8A Edwardsville. Senior running back Bryan Bradford led the way, as he rushed for 202 yards and four touchdowns on 22 carries. Senior quarterback Tyler Gabbert did his part as well, going 22/30 with 338 yards and two touchdowns. In this span of their schedule, CBC notched wins over the likes of O’Fallon, Chaminade, De Smet, and SLUH. They outscored their opponents 273-86 through the first five games of the 2018 season.
During the last weekend of September, CBC ran into St. John’s College High School out of Washington D.C. St. John’s and CBC were and still are both nationally ranked in MaxPreps high school football rankings. St. John’s is ranked as 15th right now, and CBC is right near them at 17th. When these two foes met back on September 29th, it was a shootout. The game went back and forth, with both teams scoring on big plays. CBC tied the game at 49 with 11:53 remaining in the fourth quarter. But St. John’s Ronald Cook Jr. would find the endzone with just under eight minutes to play. St. John’s would also add in a field goal with 2:27 left in the game, putting the nail in the coffin and making it a two-possession game. St. John’s took the game 59-49.
CBC would bounce back immediately after the loss, taking down Vianney 70-28. Vianney was no cakewalk either, as they have made it to the Class 5 semifinals this season. CBC would not be truly challenged down the stretch, as they fired off five straight wins heading into the semifinal matchup against Joplin. From the stretch after the St. John’s loss up until the state semifinals, CBC was a force against opposing teams, outscoring them 310-71.
Against Joplin in the state semis, the two teams went toe to toe for the first part of the game. Both teams traded touchdowns in the first eight minutes of the game. CBC then scored 14 straight points, before a Joplin touchdown made it a 21-14 game with 8:04 remaining in the second quarter. Then came the dominating wave of CBC. After giving up the TD to Joplin to make it a one possession game, CBC scored four touchdowns in the span of six minutes to jump out to a 49-14 lead at the half. The Cadets would add another touchdown in the third quarter to make it 35 unanswered points. Joplin was able to score one more touchdown in the fourth quarter, before the game finished with a final of 56-21.
CBC is led by head coach Scott Pingel. The team has a deep group of seniors, including quarterback Tyler Gabbert who is an Arkansas State Red Wolves commit. He is also the younger brother of former Mizzou QB and current NFL QB Blaine Gabbert. Gabbert has passed for over 2,700 yards and 35 touchdowns with just ONE interception. Senior Bryan Bradford is the team’s running back and has had an outstanding season as well. Bradford has rushed for over 1,800 yards and 32 touchdowns and has also added five receiving touchdowns. Bradford has Division I offers from schools such as Ball State, Eastern Michigan, and Kent State among others.
CBC boasts several other seniors on the offense with Division I talent. These include TE Niko Hea, WR Julian Williams, OL Josh Plohr, and OL Jeremiah Marlin among many others. On that already bodacious offensive line, junior offensive guard Brady Feeney has D1 offers as well, making for one of the best offensive lines in the country. On the defensive side, Senior DE MJ Anderson has put the nation on notice, as he has committed to the University of Minnesota. Before committing, Anderson had offers from schools such as Texas, Notre Dame, Michigan State, South Carolina, and TCU among many others. Senior LB Elijah Robinson has also racked up some D1 offers, including Navy, Air Force, Georgetown, and Butler. Senior DB Taylor Robinson is another D1 player for CBC, as he is committed to Navy.
To sum it up, the Division I talent and just pure talent alone on CBC’s football team is boundless. This is arguably the most talented team in school history. The Cadets currently sit at 11-1, with a chance to claim back to back state championships, and their third in the last five seasons. CBC will be pitted up against Rockhurst this year in the Class 6 Championship Game, the same team they beat for the Class 6 title in 2014. That game will take place this Saturday, November 24th at Faurot Field at the University of Missouri at 6:00pm.