Boonville senior Landon Weaver said there were a couple of selling points as to why he chose Missouri Western State University in St. Joseph.
He said along with the coaching staff and players, Missouri Western also has a family atmosphere built into their program and Weaver wanted to be a part of it.
A two-year starter for the Pirates at running back and linebacker, Boonville head coach Greg Hough said Weaver is truly a coaches dream.
“He is a yes sire, no sir type kid,” Hough said. “He’s been raised right and his parents are very active. This is their life and they’ve already ran a couple of boys through the program now. We will miss Landon like we will miss his family but as a player he truly came a long way. He was a kid that I also positioned changed.
“He was an outside linebacker last year and I moved him more to inside linebacker this past season. He is a very physical kid so again I thought he had a good year for us on the defensive side of the ball and honestly on the offensive side if we didn’t have Avian Thomas, Landon probably would be a pretty good running back for most teams.”
While Weaver excelled more on the defensive side of the ball while finishing second in tackles with 53 solo stops and 29 assisted tackles for a total of 82, he also finished with 44 carries for 225 yards for an average of 5.11 yards per carry and four catches for 61 yards for an average of 15.25 yards per catch.
Hough said Weaver is probably not going to change a whole lot and will be that style-size kid.
“Landon will bulk up obviously I think,” Hough said. “He will be a kid I think they look to play more outside linebacker and then he will be a kid who earns his keep on special teams and that’s what he needs to know.”
Weaver definitely proved his worth on the grid iron this past season while earning all-conference and all-district honors. He was also selected as the Pirate Pride Award winner and defensive player of the year for the Pirates.
“Naturally I am undersized but I’ve always felt like an underdog and in that situation is where I believe I perform the best,” Weaver said. “I’ll just have to grind in the weight room this summer to get where I need to be and work as hard as I can every opportunity to prove myself.”
With four years to prove himself on the field, Weaver said his short terms goals at Missouri Western are to get as physically prepared for college ball as he can and to push himself hard to the max and to leave everything on the field.
“Also to earn a starting spot wherever they feel I belong on the field,” Weaver said. “As for my long term goals, I want to graduate with a minor in either health and exercise science or to go pre-med.”
As for the highlight of his career, Weaver said this year in general has been a big highlight. He said having the success they had of course was amazing and that he couldn’t be happier with the group of guys they got it done with this season.
“Personally, a highlight of mine was getting 21 tackles against Blair Oaks this season,” Weaver said.
In addition to Missouri Western, Weaver said other schools that were really interested in him were NAIA schools like William Penn and University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg. He said UCM was talking to him for preferred walk-on stuff.
As for the biggest influence on Weaver playing football, he said it was definitely his brother, Jordan. He said it was always great watching him play when he was growing up.
“He played with so much passion and heart, which I believe I also do,” Weaver said. “But my freshman year watching him play his role as a senior really showed me how to be a leader.”
Weaver said he will  miss the coaches and players the most at Boonville High School. He said he has made so many long lasting memories with those people it’ll be hard to just leave.
“I look forward to seeing the next few years come up because I know they will all do great things,” Weaver said.
Hough said while all four players (Brandon Johnson, Landon Weaver, Sean White and Dalton Williams) all played different positions and were different type of kids and leaders, they all had one common goal.
“I really think that these kids put their teammates and work ethic above themselves and I think that says a lot,” Hough said.