OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — When Grant Stubblefield graduates from Blue Valley Northwest this spring, he’ll do so as both a football state champion and a basketball state champion.
Both exhilarating feelings but for different reasons.
“The football one...it was really special because it was the first one in school history,” Stubblefield said. “But I think the basketball one was more relieving because of how much history we have in our school.”
It’s true. The Huskies’ state title in football Stubblefield’s junior year in 2021 made history.
Their basketball state title last weekend in Wichita continued history.
It was Blue Valley Northwest’s sixth boys’ 6A state championship since 2013 and first since a three-peat from 2017-2019.
“We didn’t want to be the first freshman class in awhile to not get a ring,” said Stubblefield, the Hy-Vee KSHB 41 Athlete of the Week.
“I know that those kids cared about that a lot,” said Blue Valley Northwest Head Coach Aaron Ihm, who now has a state title in Kansas to go with his state title in Missouri at Raytown South in 2020.
It was poetic justice for the Huskies this season at the state tournament.
Not only did they beat rival Blue Valley North in the semi-finals, but they finally took care of Wichita Heights in the state championship game 55-50 on Saturday.
“Just the fact that we were playing them again,” Stubblefield said. “How many times we had played them in our history and how many times they had beaten us.”
In fact, BVNW was 0-7 against Heights before Saturday with four of those defeats coming in state title games.
“What a cool script to follow,” Ihm said. “Why not choose the hardest path?”
Stubblefield helped make things easier for Ihm and the Huskies, scoring 22 points in the state championship game.
“I didn’t want to have any regrets walking off the court and I just wanted to leave all I had on the court,” Stubblefield said.
“He’s a kid that I think is as good of a point guard as there is in the country,” Ihm said.
Stubblefield is the reigning Kansas 6A player of the year in basketball with a great chance to repeat this year.
He was a First-Team All-State running back as well.
But he’ll choose basketball in college, committing to Omaha earlier in the school year.