North-South Football Classic

INSTITUTE – The wait is almost over now for Kane Roush of Wahama and his South teammates, who have been at North-South camp at West Virginia State University here since Sunday night preparing for Saturday’s 7 p.m. W.Va. North-South Football Classic at Laidley Field in Charleston.

But Roush is still chomping at the bit to get out on the field and play some football again.

“I’m ready right now to see what our team can do,” he said. “I know it’s only Tuesday (which was North-South football media day), but I’m ready to rock and roll. I can’t wait until Saturday.”

For the 5-foot-9, 170-pound Roush, playing in the North-South game “is a real big honor,” said the University of Charleston football recruit.

“I’m really excited to actually play in this game. Two of my (Wahama) teammates last year got to play in it, and I went and watched them. And the only thing I could think about while watching them play was, ‘This looks great; I wish I could play in it – that would be awesome.’

“So when I got invited (to play in it) this year, I was like, ‘Yes, this going to be a great experience for me.’ And it has been.”

Roush was a multi-threat athlete in his prep grid career at Wahama, scoring a career total 48 touchdowns (38 offensive, two defensive and eight on kick/punt returns).

He is the all-time leading rusher as well as a TD record-holder for the White Falcons. A first-team all-Tri-Valley Conference selection at running back last fall, Roush followed that by being chosen first-team all-state as a utility player.

As a junior, he rushed for 1,771 yards on 145 totes of the pigskin for an amazing 12.2 ypc average and 25 touchdowns.

A native West Virginian, born and raised, from Mason County, Roush “had always heard about the North-South game,” and seeing it in person the last three years just whetted his appetite even more to get to play in it.

In high school, Roush usually played running back or receiver, but for this game, he’ll be stationed at cornerback as well as returning kicks. And Roush is OK with that.

“Any way I can do my part, any way the coaches want to put me on the field and use me, I’m all game, and it’s perfectly fine with me,” said Roush.

He feels his best position of offense is, of course, running back, while on defense, “I like playing safety, coming up and filling the extra holes – that’s fun,” said Roush.

At Wahama, Roush played on White Falcon grid teams that were not only perennial playoff participants, but prime state-title contenders – state finals his freshman year, Final Four as a sophomore, his junior year winning the Class A state championship in a 43-42 overtime thriller over Weirton Madonna, and last fall making the semifinals again as a senior.

“So we had a great run every single year,” said Roush. “You couldn’t ask for any better teammates, coaches, fans and community, which really comes together for the football team and that really just gives us a lot of confidence. Mason is a great little football town.”

And while he said that “winning the (North-South) game would be nice, really meeting everybody down here is probably the best experience out of it all. I love talking to new people and socializing – that’s my thing.”

When choosing a college, Roush went with UC because “they have a program in my major (business marketing) where I can get my masters (degree) in five years.”

In football, the Golden Eagles “are trying to start me out at punt returner and kick returner, and then eventually move on to either slot (receiver) or running back,” said Roush.