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Harding selected to play in Kansas Shrine Bowl

Andy Brown / Louisburg Sports Zone
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Louisburg senior Garrett Harding was recently selected to the Kansas Shrine Bowl.

When Garrett Harding received a text from his coach Robert Ebenstein, he couldn’t believe what he what he was reading.

It delivered some unexpected – but welcome – news.

Harding was recently selected to play in the Kansas Shrine Bowl for the East side of the state after a strong season for the Louisburg football team. The game will take place on July 18 at Yager Stadium on the campus of Washburn University in Topeka.

“My first reaction when (coach) E texted me was my heart skipped a beat,” Harding said. “I felt a rush of adrenaline I used to get before every football game and it was like was back out on the field again. It is a tremendous honor for me to be selected to play with such talented athletes and representing the Louisburg community. I also would like to thank my parents, siblings, coaches, and teammates for supporting me and pushing me to be better every day.”

The Kansas Shrine Bowl is an all-star high school senior, East vs. West, football game put on each year in Kansas, by the Kansas Shrine. It is a 501(c) 3 non-profit charity that produces annual events and related activities, with net proceeds benefiting Shriners Hospitals for Children. The Kansas Shrine Bowl has sent over $2M to Shriners Hospitals for Children.

Notable alumni of the game include current Oakland Raiders All-Pro Wide Receiver Jordy Nelson, NFL Hall of Famer Barry Sanders, former Kansas State and Kansas City Chiefs Linebacker Gary Spani, former Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year and Super Bowl Champion Linebacker Mark Simoneau and many others.

Harding had a big year for the Wildcats on both sides of the ball. The Louisburg senior was named to the All-Frontier League first team as an offensive lineman after he helped the Wildcats amass 2,822 yards of offense, including more than 2,100 yards on the ground.

He was also named an all-league defensive second team player. He was second on the team with 65 tackles on the season, including 12 solo stops.

The Topeka Capital-Journal also named Harding to the Class 4A all-state first team.

The opportunity to play in the annual Kansas all-star is one Harding is not about to pass up. He will get to play along with some of the best senior players across the state.

“The thing I’m most looking forward to during the Shrine Bowl is playing some of my friends that I used to play with on other teams like Gardner and the Topeka Crush,” Harding said. “Also, I’m looking forward to showing my talents and heart out on the field again, representing the best of our state.”

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