When it comes to playing football, Kenyon Oblad does not act his age.
Only 12 years old, Oblad has been playing organized football since he was 5 years old.
Not only has he played for the Henderson (Nevada) Cowboys since 2005, Oblad’s participated in every fall and spring season.
So this year is his 15th season playing for the Cowboys, which should tell you something about Oblad’s love for and dedication to playing football.
“I really like playing basketball,” said Oblad, a standout shooting guard and small forward at Del Webb Middle School. “But football is my first love, it’s No. 1 to me. I’ve always liked playing quarterback, and I like to play defense, too. I play safety and linebacker and I like to hit and tackle.”
Quarterback is Oblad’s best position, and he’s honed his skills under center by attending NFA camps in Fresno in 2010 and Sacramento this year. He was also at NFA’s Duel of the Dozens at Canton, Ohio, in July.
“He’s very smooth and naturally talented,” said NFA Coach Will Hewlett.
Developing as a passer takes time for young quarterbacks, and it can be a difficult challenge.
Working with NFA is already making a big difference with Oblad, who has been playing QB since he was 8 years old.
“They’ve helped me with my mechanics a lot,” Oblad said. “I really didn’t have good mechanics before going to NFA, but they have really improved.”
Oblad also gets good coaching from his father, Jeromy, while playing with the Henderson Cowboys just outside of Las Vegas.
Recognizing the obvious natural talent Kenyon has playing quarterback, Jeromy has him playing with the 12-and-under team and the 14-and-under team as well.
Kenyon starts for the 12U Cowboys and threw 5 touchdown passes in the Cowboys’ first two games this season, wins of 47-0 and 64-12.
Kenyon is the backup QB for Henderson’s 14U team. Earlier this season, he came on in the second quarter with the Cowboys trailing 24-14 and sparked a 52-30 comeback win.
Oblad has become accustomed to winning while playing for Henderson.
The Cowboys are a powerhouse youth program, winning 11 state championships and four national tournament championships.
With Oblad quarterbacking the 12U team, they won a staggering 52 games in a row over the past two fall and spring seasons.
Winning the National Youth Sports national championship in June of 2011 highlighted the lengthy winning streak, which came to an end this past June. The Cowboys lost by 1 point to the San Antonio Junior Rattlers in the San Diego Tournament.
San Antonio went on to become NYS national champions.
“It was an incredible game between two incredible teams,” Coach Jeromy Oblad said.
Oblad also led his 10-and-under team to the NYS title in June of 2010 while also quarterbacking the 12U Henderson team in the same tournament.
Believe it or not, there is more.
Jeromy Oblad also coaches the freshman team at Coronado High School in Henderson, Nev., and Kenyon has gained additional experience competing against players at a higher level.
“This summer and last summer, Kenyon had the opportunity to throw to freshman receivers, and against freshman coverages,” Jeromy Oblad said. “He does very well throwing against the much faster players and it is a great learning experience for him, as he now understands why Coach Will Hewlett preaches velocity.”
While he currently stands 5-foot-6, Kenyon Oblad undoubtedly has a growth spurt coming soon.
His father is 6-foot-5 and his sister, Berkeley, is 6-foot-3. A sophomore in high school, Berkeley is an All-Conference volleyball player and she earned a spot on the USA team.
“We hope I’m going to be tall like my dad and my sister,” Kenyon said.
As he gains size and even more experience, Oblad appears headed for very big things on the football field.
“I’d like to win the state championship and hopefully to play in the NFA All-American game in Florida,” Oblad said. “I think I’m a pretty good passer, but I’m trying to improve my footwork and I’m trying to get my mechanics better. I’ll keep working at it.”
When he’s playing football, it’s more fun than work for Oblad. Between practice, games and off-season camps, he rarely takes a break.
“I love being out on the field and leading the offense,” Oblad said. “I like reading the defenses and leading my team down the field. Football is something I’ve always enjoyed playing and I’m looking forward to getting even better as I keep on playing.”
Oblad’s already bright future got a recent boost when he enrolled in NFA’s elite Blackshirt program.
“We are excited to see how his QB skills will improve while being involved with the program,” Jeromy Oblad said.