Boyle County at Frederick Douglass Preview, Presented by Kroger
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Boyle County at Frederick Douglass Preview, Presented by Kroger

Troy Howellabout 1 month


Article written by:Troy HowellTroy Howell

I will head to The Farm in Hamburg on Friday night to cover the Top-10 Matchup between Frederick Douglass and Boyle County.  Follow me on Twitter at @teeroyhowell for updates and check back on KSR for a game recap.  The game kicks off at 7:30 P.M. this Friday at Frederick Douglass High School.

Past History

I know it was only 7-on-7 but it was a chippy and intense battle at EKU.  Douglass held on to win after the Boyle County would-be tying score was disallowed due to a timing sack being called.  There were some heated moments between the players and some jawing going on between the Douglass sideline and the Boyle County fans.  I know both teams have been looking forward to Friday night for a long, long time.

Frederick Douglass

KSR State Ranking: 4

KSR Class Rank:  #1 in 5A

State Championships:  0

State Runner-up:  1 (a 14-7 2019 loss to Michael Mayer and the Covington Catholic Colonels)

Last Season:  Finished 7-2.  Missed a late field goal and lost to Gavin Wimsatt and the Owensboro Red Devils 28-27 in 5A semifinals)

Coach: Nathan McPeek is in his 2nd season as the Broncos’ head coach.  He has a 16-2 record at Douglass

Key Players

Sr. WR Dane Key –Leads the team receptions (31) yards (501) and TDs (5).  One of the favorites for Mr. Football.  

Sr., QB Samuel Cornett – 92-for-149 for 1,453 yards, 15 TDs and 2 picks.  Has shown tremendous improvement since arriving at Douglass at the start of last season from Washington state.  Holds offers from Butler, Valparaiso and Stetson.

Jr., DB Ty Bryant – 25 Tackles, 2 tackles for loss, 2 interceptions – 1 returned for a TD.  Committed to UK.

Boyle County

KSR State Ranking:  7

KSR Class Rank:  #2 in 4A

State Championships:  9 (1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2009, 2010, 2017 2020)

State Runner-up:  2 (2004, 2019)

Last Season:  11-0.  Defeated Franklin County 31-28 (OT) in 4A finals on this 4th down stop from Luke Sheperson

Coach:  Justin Haddix – Led Boyle County to the 2020 state championship in his first year as the Rebels’ coach.  Finished runner-up to Boyle County in 2017 and to Central in 2018 as head coach at Corbin

Key Players

Sr., QB Jagger Gillis – 116-for-173 for 1,784 yards, 20 TDs and 2 picks, 7 rushing TDs.  Returned for a second senior season and is a Mr. Football candidate.

Sr., WR Cole Lanter – 52 catches for 919 yards and 15 touchdowns, 7 rushing TDs, 1 return TD.  Underrated player.  Cousin of former UK basketball played Tod Lanter.

Sr., K/P Jackson Smith – 42-of-46 on extra points and 5-of-7 on field-goal attempts.  Committed to UK.

Jr., DL Tommy Ziesmer – 37 tackles, 9 tackles for loss, 2 sacks.  One of the top defensive linemen in the state.


Frederick Douglass (7-0) comes in facing their toughest competition of the season.  They have one Top-25 win (27-14 over #13 Bryan Station in Week 1).  Boyle County (7-1) has won six straight games after losing to #3 LCA 35-28 in week 2.  The Rebels hold a Top-25 win over #17 Lexington Catholic 16-10.

Both quarterbacks are excellent.  Frederick Douglass has an elite WR in Key, while Boyle County counters with Lanter, whose 103 receiving yards per game puts him at #3 in the state.

Though often teams will rest their stars on the last night of the regular season, I don’t expect that to happen in this matchup.  Both are looking to get in some good competition after a season filled with blowouts.  Frederick Douglass is currently in a dead heat with Woodford County for the #1 RPI in 5A, so a win could be important.  Boyle County currently has the #1 RPI in 4A.  


If the game comes down to a last second kick, UK commit Jackson Smith is a guy that can be counted on to make clutch field goals.  He drilled what turned out to be the game-winner in overtime of the state finals last year.  That is exactly what Jude Howell thinks will happen.

Barkley’s Prediction:  Frederick Douglass 42 Boyle County 28

Troy’s Prediction:  Frederick Douglass 28 Boyle County 25

Jude Howell Prediction:  Boyle County 35 Frederick Douglass 28


Football weather.  Low 50s and potential showers.


I interviewed Boyle County Coach Justin Haddix on the Kentucky High School Sports Podcast this summer.  Hear what he had to say about his squad:

Subscribe to the podcast to check out my game preview and recap episodes.  There will also be a basketball preview coming soon.

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