Last year, it was Perry Olsen who assumed a leadership role in the Yukon football program. This year, another Olsen is picking up where his brother left off.
Miller senior Owen Olsen is expected to be among the leaders of the Yukon football team this fall. The two-way player had the opportunity to watch his older brother, Perry, lead by example in 2017, but with Perry moving on to the college ranks, it is time for younger brother to step up.
“I had a great experience at Yukon as a junior,” Olsen said. “I kind of have always been in Perry’s shadow, but I have learned a lot from him over the years. I’m glad he received the recognition he did. It helped bring me up as well.”
Olsen doesn’t play the same position as his brother. He lined up as a safety, outside linebacker and stand-up defensive end as a junior. This year he is adding another position to his arsenal.
“I thought when I came to Yukon I was going to be a receiver, but then they moved me to safety, then to outside linebacker and then to a stand-up defensive end,” Olsen said. “This year, I am going to be a stand-up defensive end but also play receiver. I’m excited to get to play both ways. I have always done that, so it will be good to get back on that side of the ball.”
Olsen walked on the Yukon High School campus for the first time in the spring semester of his sophomore year. Since then, the 6-foot-3, 200-pounder has grown mentally and physically.
“I have put on about 25 pounds since I have been here,” Olsen said. “I feel like it’s my time to shine. I had a good year last year and I have had a good spring. I think it’s time for the whole team to shine.”
Yukon won four games last year and came within a game of making the playoffs. It was a strong start to head coach Jeremy Reed’s tenure with the Millers.
Olsen said it’s time to keep building on the foundation.
“It should be a great year,” Olsen said. “We expect a lot out of our defense this year. We get a lot of guys back and have some strong players stepping up to fill the spots that were open. We are stacked on that side of the ball. The offense is great. Jackson (Young) is doing a great job at quarterback.”
Olsen and the Millers have been preparing for the 2018 season with Miller Iron summer workouts since early June. He said summer workouts are tough, but vital to a team’s success in the fall.
“The summer has been great,” Olsen said. “Workouts are tough but they are supposed to be. We are really coming together as a team.”
With his size and athletic ability, Olsen is attracting attention from the next level. He said he has received five scholarship offers and is talking with several other colleges. He added that he will play defense in college, most likely an outside linebacker position.
Miller Iron workouts come to an end in two weeks and practice opens Aug. 6. Yukon will have a shortened preseason with the Millers opening the 2018 season Aug. 24 on Zero Week against Edmond North. Olsen said it will be different because everything will be shortened in the preseason and he added what it will take for Yukon to achieve its goals this year.
“Playing Zero Week, everything moves up a week,” Olsen said. “We will be ready for it. We just need to stick together, like a brotherhood and stay on track. We need to keep our focus and we will be successful.”