Local 11-year-old Beau Gilpin will be competing in the Team Championship level of Punt Pass and Kick this weekend at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City.
Local 11-year-old Beau Gilpin will be competing in the Team Championship level of Punt Pass and Kick this weekend at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City. The Chiefs will be playing their rematch with the Denver Broncos on Sunday, and sectional winners from four States will be vying for spots in the PPK National Finals to be contested at a future NFL playoff game. Gilpin, a 5th grader at Liberty Middle School, earned his way to KC by winning his age group (10-11) at the local PPK contest last fall, and then prevailing in the subsequent sectional contest at Wellington. There were numerous sectionals held throughout the Chiefs team area (Kansas, Missouri, Iowa and Nebraska) in October and early November. Only the top four sectional winners advance to the Team Championships level, so Gilpin can already be proud that he is in the top four in his age group in all of Kansas, Missouri, Iowa and Nebraska no matter how things turn out this weekend. Should Gilpin be among the top four of the thirty-two Team Champions nationwide following the competition in KC, he will advance to the National Finals which will be held at an NFL playoff game to-be-determined. The actual competition will be held prior to the Chiefs-Broncos game at the indoor practice facility at Arrowhead. Winners will be announced at halftime of the game, and all participants will get to toss the ball around a little down on the field. Everyone is allowed to watch the PPK competition at the practice facility, but the NFL only gives game tickets to the contestant and to one accompanying adult. The Gilpins had to try to acquire hard-to-come-by tickets for other family members to be able to attend the sold-out game. Parents Matt and Emily Gilpin will accompany Beau to Kansas City, as well as Emily’s parents Richard and Marilyn Wyatt. Paternal grandparents Bob and Loree Gilpin will be cheering Beau on from home. Beau has been practicing hard to get ready for the competition. “I don’t know if he realizes the actual scope of this, when he gets down on the field with all the people there,” father Matt Gilpin said. Beau said that his passing, punting and kicking are all about equal, but that his passing might be his best event. He achieved his highest score in sectionals with his passing. “My dad has been helping me practice, marking my spots and so on,” Beau reported. “He gives me a few tips on my form and technique.”