Key cog for Wildcats football heads to college

Wednesday, February 8, 2017
After terrorizing offensive and defensive lines in the Big 8 Conference for four years, Cassville’s Devin Phelps will try his hand in the MIAA Conference at Missouri Southern State University next season. Kyle Troutman/

Devin Phelps ready to make a mark in MIAA

Cassville senior Devin Phelps is easy to spot on and off the football field.

At 6-4, 260 pounds, the senior lineman has spent three years inflicting his will upon offensive and defensive lines of the Big 8 Conference.

Now, Phelps will get a chance to demonstrate what made him a beloved Wildcat lineman on the college level. Phelps, in front of a large contingent of family and friends, signed a national letter of intent to play football at Missouri Southern State University in Joplin next year.

One thing Cassville Coach Lance Parnell has always stressed to his players is academics and finding the right fit if they want to go to college.

“It is always about academics,” Parnell said. “I always talk to my guys about finding a place that if football doesn’t work out, do you still want to go to school there. Devin is a man with great character, and MSSU is getting a kid that has the potential to be a difference maker.”

For the Wildcats, Phelps played offensive and defensive tackle and was a three-year starter.

He earned First Team All-Conference, All-District, All-Region and All-State awards.

“Our kids today got to see a young man who took care of things in the class room, and on the field, sign with a college to play football,” Parnell said. “That’s huge for our program, and hopefully they aspire to do the same thing.”

Phelps was part of an offensive line that allowed the Wildcats to rush for over 3,000 yards, and Parnell said the ‘Cats do not do that without Phelps.

For the senior, he chose the Lions over Northwest Missouri State University and Northeastern Oklahoma State.

“MSSU felt like home,” Phelps said. “It wasn’t a hard choice when I saw the campus. I think my work ethic will help me in college and Coach Parnell helped me by pushing me in the weight room to get better. He knew how to push me to be better.”

Phelps is the son of Dale and Sarah Phelps.

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