Some Super Bowl stars got their start in Kansas
WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - Super Bowl LV will feature some of the best players to play football, several of whom got their start right here in Kansas.
“The type of football we are able to have here in community colleges in the Jayhawk conference, it shows you the type of competition and high quality and high caliber games that are going to be,” Josh Gooch, Hutchinson Community College Athletic Director, said.
The Jayhawk Conference, one of the best in leagues in the junior college ranks has seen plenty of future pros over the years.
Tyreek Hill and Byron Pringle have turned into household names for the Chiefs. Hill spent two years at Garden City before transferring to Oklahoma State and West Alabama.
Pringle, a K-State star, got his college start in El Dorado.
Pringle’s coach at Butler Community College says he’s glad, but not surprised, to see the success Byron has had in his first few seasons in the NFL.
“You just feel elated for him, you just know how hard he’s worked and how important it is to him,” Butler Community College Head Football Coach Tim Schaffner said.
Coach Schaffner said besides his work ethic, the one thing that stood out the most about Pringle was his attitude.
“He is one of the happiest people I know and he was happy here as a red shirt. It’s easy to say he’s in the league and in the Super Bowl, of course he’s happy.”
Pringle went on to play at K-State, he signed with the Chiefs in 2018.
While Pringle was a redshirt at Butler, Tampa Bay’s Jeremiah Ledbetter became an All-American defensive lineman at Hutchinson Community College in his sophomore season.
After finishing his career at Arkansas, Ledbetter signed with the Lions, before finding his way to the Buccaneers.
“We are proud of him for maximizing his opportunities and competing at the highest level,” Gooch said.
Gooch was the offensive coordinator while Ledbetter was a Blue Dragon. He said it isn’t surprising to see former players on the biggest stage in football, knowing the work it took to get there.
“It’s an awesome day and culmination when you see those players in the Super Bowl that played two years, and you coached them, or you watched them, and maybe some opponents you played against.”
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