Change will be a common theme for the upcoming football season for the Leavenworth High School Pioneers. 

Off of the field, Leavenworth will join the newly formed United Kansas Conference with other area schools after previously being in the Sunflower League for more than three decades.

On the field will change with youth. The skill positions, especially at receiver, will be filled with inexperienced young players.

A veteran group of linemen on both sides of the ball will join quarterback Robert McKinley as some of the leaders of the young team. 

While there is a lot of changes coming to the Pioneers, there is still some much-needed stability with head coach Mark Littrell still roaming the sideline. 

Having the Hall of Fame coach on the sidelines will help alleviate the growing pains that will come in the season. 

While Littrell expects some struggles from the new starters, he is not worried based on the effort by the young players from the previous week’s camp.

“I’m sure there will be growing pains because we are going to have to start some sophomores and some inexperienced juniors,” Littrell said. “But, we got to fight through those and work through the season. If those players keep improving like they did last week, we will be OK.”