Kyle Luis

Mountain Pointe offensive lineman Kyle Luis is small for offensive linemen, but has the right attitude to make up for it.

By Darryl Webb

Kyle Luis is a bit of a throwback.

In today's game of football, where offensive lines are as large as Mountain Pointe's, girth is common place in the trenches.

Roster height and weight listings are about as trustworthy as any stock tip in today's market. There might be some truth to it, but don't bet on it.

There is no denying that offensive lines, at any level of the game, on average are bigger than they were 15 years ago.

It is not uncommon to have a 300-pounder or two, a couple at 260 pounds, and maybe one lineman somewhere around 250, at the big-school divisions in high school football.

And then there is Luis.

The Mountain Pointe senior has started 11 of the last 12 games at left guard despite being listed at 6-foot-1 and 214 pounds.

"He's a little small, but he plays hard and he is getting better," Mountain Pointe coach Norris Vaughan said. "He is quick and best suited for pulling on sweeps. Kyle is a perfect wing T guard, but we aren't running that anymore."

Luis got his shot to start as a junior when Natrel Curtis sustained a knee injury in the Desert Vista game. It shifted the lineup and Luis started the final eight games and two of the three games in 2011, missing out on the Mesa game, when the Pride started its projected lineup.

Unless the depth chart changes again this week, Luis should be back in there tonight for Mountain Pointe (1-2) against Sierra Vista Buena (0-3) at home.

"I want to start every game," said Luis, who also played some tackle. "I work hard during the week, show the coaches that I am prepared and willing to do whatever they need me to do."

Vaughan said Luis is holding his own despite facing defensive tackles and nose guards who have plenty of size and, more importantly, leverage over him.

"He is a good kid and student," Vaughan said. "He overcomes his lack of size because of his approach. He has graded out OK and is getting better."

The Pride ended spring ball with the idea that the left side of the line would be 6-0, 297-pound senior Jacob "Binky" Davis at left guard and 6-4, 243-pound junior Kenny Lacy at left tackle, both of whom would be first-time varsity starters.

It hasn't worked out that way so far, with Luis getting the call at guard in two of the games. Part of it is the fact that Luis is dependable, while Lacy missed the first start and Davis the third game.

"It's great having someone like Kyle because you know he is going to be ready to play," senior center Bryce Hurd said. "We know we can count on him."

Luis understands his role and knows college football recruiters are not going to be drooling over someone his size.

And he is all right with that.

"I love playing football, but I am not going to play in college," he said. "I am focusing on getting an education in college."

Luis has a 3.5 GPA, but is unsure of where he will end up. Chances are, though, once he gets there Luis will adjust fine just like he has in his football career.

The college decision will come with time, but for now Luis is satisfied knowing his teammates realize he is always ready to contribute.

"I like being counted on," he said. "That's what good teammates are and that's what I want to be."

Contact writer: (480) 898-7915 or Follow him @JSkodaAFN.

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