MANHATTAN, Kan. (WIBW) - The reactions as they walked in said it all.
"Bro, this is insane."
"I'm like speechless."
A day before they try to bring home a 1A state title, the Centralia Panthers entered something they've never really seen: a Power Five college football practice facility. They did their last walkthrough at Kansas State's indoor field and were blown away.
"None of us have ever seen anything like this," senior quarterback Kamble Haverkamp said. "We're a small town, so I mean, our practice field is just...it's grass and a couple buildings, and that's what we play on. We love it, but to come into a place like this, it's crazy. It's nothing like I've ever experienced in my life."
Haverkamp has sort of experienced what a Centralia state title can feel like. When the Panthers last won in 2013, he was in junior high and a ball boy for the team.
"Watching it then, it was a dream to someday be there," Haverkamp said. "I was on the sidelines, so I kind of got to see it firsthand and it was crazy. All I've wanted since then is to be back. It'd be great to just get another one for the Centralia coaching staff and more for the community of Centralia."
The Panthers face Smith Center at 3 p.m. at Hutchinson Community College.