Six Iowa high school football players took home first-year awards at the 2019 Iowa High School State Football Championships. Hog of the Game awards went to the outstanding offensive lineman in each of the championship games. The HOG awards are sponsored by the Iowa Pork Producers Association and awarded by the Iowa High School Sports Network.
HOG award winners were recognized for their strength and speed in creating opportunities for their teams to be successful.
"We sponsored the award for three reasons. First, we wanted to recognize the often unsung linemen who are out front and helping their offense be effective," says IPPA president Trent Thiele, from Elma, Iowa. "Iowa's pig farmers also work to create opportunities for their industry and their communities to be successful.
"Communities, especially rural communities, are important to Iowa's pig farmers. In our everyday work, we are bringing economic value to those communities, but by supporting Iowa high school sports organizations, we are also supporting efforts to support the camaraderie of communities that exists around their schools.
"Third, we have a 10-year relationship with IHSSN, and we wanted to celebrate that with this new award."
"The IHSSN is very excited to be a part of this award. Everyone we visited with about the Hog of the Game commented that the IPPA had knocked it out of the park with this type of recognition. We are also very proud to be associated with the IPPA for all these years. They have been a first-class organization to work with," says Ken Krogman, president of IHSSN.
Iowa high school players who received the 2019 HOG awards are:
- Carter Weber of Don Bosco High School, the winners of the 8-player tournament. Weber is a senior and the son of Eric and Stephanie Weber of Elk Run Heights.
- Tanner Thompson, a junior at West Hancock High School, the winners of the Class A contest. Thompson, of Kanawha, is the son of Susan Thompson and Bill Thompson.
- Jordan Ver Meer, a junior at West Lyon High School, the winners of the Class 1A title. Ver Meer is the son of Wes and Alicia Ver Meer, Larchwood.
- Zach Dunker, a junior at OABCIG High School, the winner of the Class 2A tournament. Dunker, who is from Ida Grove, is the son of Rodney Dunker and Tina Sohm.
- Will Conlan, a senior at Western Dubuque, which won the Class 3A Championship. Conlan is the son of Tom and Marci Conlan of Peosta.
- Ryan Boles, a senior at Dowling Catholic High School, the Class 4A tournament winners. Boles is the son of Matt and Mary Boles, Adel.