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About

Class 1 District 4

Southwest Conference

School Colors: Black and Gold

Head Coach: Mac Whitehead (7-22, 4th season)

Assistant coaches: Bill Gray (RB/OLB), Matt McKee (DC/LB/WR), Nathan Moser (QB/DB) and Eric Henningsen (OL/DL)

COACH WHITEHEAD SAYS:

“I think we continued to grow as a program last year. Even with the limited time together and the unusual circumstances, our guys continued to grow. The commitment to the weight room has continued, and I truly believe this year you will see the physical difference on the field. Our kids have committed themselves to the process and the results have been unbelievable.”

Five Year Trend (Playoffs)

  • 2020: 2-7 (First Round)
  • 2019: 2-8 (First Round)
  • 2018: 3-7 (First Round)
  • 2017: 0-10 (First Round)
  • 2016: 8-3 (Second Round)

2020 REVIEW

Diamond has struggled a little bit the last few years. The Wildcats went 2-7 in 2020, making it their second straight two-win season. Their two wins came in week three against Greenfield and week seven against Pleasant Hope. “Going week-to-week preparing for an opponent, and not being 100% sure you were going to get to play was a challenge,” coach Whitehead says of the 2020 season, “I thought the kids handled it well. We never made excuses about who could play and who couldn’t play. I am very proud of the kids and their “next man up” mentality.” Last season was also just a reminder of how tough the Southwest conference is to climb. “It’s one of the toughest in Missouri Class 1,” Whitehead adds of the league, “We saw that with the success that Marionville and Lockwood had in the playoffs. For us to compete in our conference each week, we have to have a championship mentality. That’s the one thing we are continuing to grow and build here at Diamond.”

RETURNING STARTERS (2020 stats)

RB/LB Landon Clement (Sr) 5’9″, 205 lb – 1st team All-SWC LB

QB/DB Hunter Shallenburger (Sr) 5’11”, 185 lb – 2nd team All-SWC DB

OL/DL Tyler May (Sr) 5’9″, 220 lb – 2nd team All-SWC OL

WR/DB Chase Housh (Sr) 5’8″, 160 lb

RB/LB Isaac Baird (Sr) 5’10”, 185 lb

WR/LB Karl Culbertson (Sr) 5’10”, 190 lb

OL/DL Ty Douglas (Sr) 6’0″, 200 lb

TE/DL Blake Grube (Sr) 6’2″, 220 lb

OL/DL/K Jacob Atkinson (Jr) 6’3″, 200 lb – 2nd team All-SWC K

WR/DB Blake Irwin (Jr) 5’9″, 170 lb

OL/LB X-Zontae Foster (Jr) 6’0″, 215 lb

OL/DL Alex Brown (Jr) 5’10”, 190 lb

OL/DL Clay Callis (Jr) 6’1, 320 lb

OTHER KEY RETURNERS

QB/DB Peyton Marbough (So) 5’9″, 165 lb

RB/DB Kaleb Belcher (So) 5’8″, 170 lb

WR/DB Cody Neal (So) 5’8″, 150 lb

RB/DB Kaden Rodgers (So) 5’9″, 150 lb

RB/LB Kendal King (So) 5’10”, 160 lb

OL/DL Nathan Gray (Jr) 5’10”, 180 LB

OL/LB Jack Englert (Jr) 5’10”, 180 lb

RB/LB Austin Evans (So) 5’9″, 150 lb

TE/LB Landen Adams (So) 5’10”, 185 lb

SCHEDULE:

8/27 @ Ash Grove

9/3 vs. Pierce City

9/10 vs. Lighthouse Sr. High

9/17 @ Miller

9/24 @ Marionville

10/2 vs. St. Michael the Archangel

10/8 vs. Stockton

10/15 vs. Sarcoxie

10/22 OPEN

2021 SEASON OUTLOOK

Diamond is still trying to find its footing. The Wildcats haven’t cracked .500 or won a district game since 2016. The good news is that they have a good group of seniors back in 2021 who have a good idea of what it’s going to take to start winning games. “We will rely heavily on their experience and leadership,” coach Whitehead says of his seniors, “These young men have been playing a lot of Friday night snaps since they were freshmen. They have paid their dues and are excited about the work they have done to prepare them for this season. They’ve been leaders in every area…and I can’t express my excitement enough with what this group has done and the work they have put in to turn this program around.” More good news for the Wildcats is the fact that they have a little depth on the offensive line. They only lost one starter from last year’s group at the position. The biggest thing for Diamond will be making sure they don’t get themselves out of games early by turning the ball over. “We have to do a better job keeping the ball in our possession,” Whitehead says, “We simply cannot give our opponents extra possessions. We just want to go compete every week with the teams in our conference, and be fundamentally sound in all parts of the game.”