Butler has second largest margin of victory in school history with win over McDougle Tech

Lionel Tipton
Butler's Jordan Kempf runs against McDougle Technical Institute on Saturday, Oct. 16 at BG Products Veterans Sports Complex. Kempf scored a touchdown and had 34 yards in the win as Butler ran for 463 yards on the afternoon.

EL DORADO – Perhaps the best explanation of how big a mismatch Saturday’s Butler game against McDougle Technical Institute would be this:

The Grizzlies had scored enough points to win just nine seconds into the game.

From there, Butler (4-2) pounded the outmanned Bison with 11 more touchdowns and breezed to an easy 86-6 victory at BG Products Veterans Sports Complex. 

The 80-point margin of victory is the second most in school history. Butler's 89-0 win over Highland in Sept. 2011 is the school record. Saturday's win surpasses the 79-0 win Butler had over Independence in Sept. 2013.

As Saturday was a day for reminiscing, with the induction of former coach Troy Morrell into the Butler Sports Hall of Fame, the Grizzlies had a game very similar to those Morrell coached in 15 years of dominating the Jayhawk Conference. Tim Schaffner, who succeeded Morrell in 2014 after serving as his defensive coordinator, said Morrell’s honor added some motivation for the team.

“We did want to win on his enshrinement day,” Schaffner said. “It was just a day that we had talked about all week about working on executing the plan. Whatever that plan was, offensively, defensively, make sure we executed it.”

McDougle’s schedule has been somewhat murderous this year, including games against third-ranked Independence, eighth-ranked Snow (Utah) and Lackawanna (N.Y.), which like Butler is listed as receiving votes in the latest NJCAA poll.

So this was more than just a glorified scrimmage, Schaffner said. 

“We had watched them play really quality opponents,” he said. “For us to get on them that quickly, I was a little bit surprised. To that extreme, that had not happened.”

Very little went wrong on this day for Butler, which scored six touchdowns in the first quarter alone. The defense also sacked the McDougle quarterback in the end zone for a safety and recovered a Bison fumble in the end zone as well, giving the Grizzlies a commanding 44-0 lead by the end of the period. 

The lead had grown to 58-0 by halftime.

This game became a showpiece for the Butler running back corps. Of the 11 offensive touchdowns, 10 came on the ground. Four Butler backs – sophomores Adarius Thomas, Paris Brown and Caden Cox as well as freshman KJ Shankle – each had two touchdowns.

Scoring is nice, but Schaffner said afterward that he wished there had been more of a balance between rushing and passing touchdowns. However, he was hesitant to throw the ball late in the game with such a commanding lead for fear of being perceived as running up the score.

The Grizzlies passed for just 113 yards but amassed a whopping 463 yards on the ground.

“We needed to work a little bit more on the passing game in live situations,” Schaffner said. 

McDougle (based in Pompano Beach, Fla.) has been scheduled this season as an extra game beyond the seven the Jayhawk Conference teams play in the regular season. The Bison’s only other foray into the conference was a 69-0 drubbing at Independence on Sept. 11.

One stat defines Butler’s overall offensive efficiency: The Grizzlies scored their 86 points despite controlling the ball less than McDougle, which held a four-minute advantage in time of possession. 

Sophomore Kevontae McDonald led Butler in rushing with 100 yards and a touchdown, followed by Shankle (90, 2 TDs), Cox (89, 2 TDs), Thomas (84, 2 TDs), Brown (69, 2 TDs) and sophomore Jordan Kempf (34 and a touchdown). 

But there also was some fear that such a blowout might affect the Grizzlies in their next game Saturday against Fort Scott. The Greyhounds and seventh-ranked Coffeyville were tied at halftime before the Red Ravens scored 21 fourth-quarter points and won, 31-3. Schaffner said Butler wouldn’t be taking Fort Scott too lightly.

“That shows that you’d better show up every Saturday in this conference, or you’re liable to be knocked off,” he said.

Schaffner said he isn’t worried about any complacency, and the game actually provided a positive for the Grizzlies.

“One thing I know about good teams is that players enjoy watching their teammates who practice all week long and may not get to play a lot have success on the field,” he said. “So, the plan is for the starters to go out and create a buffer for those guys who don’t get to play a lot.

“It was great to see the team celebrate for guys like that, who don’t often get a lot of carries, or snaps, or reps, or things like that.”

After last season – played in the spring – and its unique set of problems, Schaffner said he’s relieved to be back on a more conventional type of schedule.

“It feels closer to normal,” he said. “As we continue to knock the rust off and sharpen some things we need to work on, that makes us feel real good heading into the (conference) playoffs.

“We want to be a tough out when November gets here, a team that other teams don’t look forward to play.”

Shankle provided some of the fireworks on his touchdown runs of 40 and 50 yards – his only carries of the day. Cox’s two scores, on runs of 16 and 21 yards, closed the Grizzlies’ scoring.

Of special note is that freshman kicker Carson Arndt converted all 12 of his point-after tries. 

“It doesn’t hurt to have legs like that in your program,” Schaffner said. “You don’t know how important they are until you don’t have one.”