SCOTTSBLUFF, Neb. — Jasiya DeOllos’ name always seems to come up in any conversation about Scottsbluff sports.
While the soft-spoken senior is lesser known for his grit on the gridiron than his grace on the basketball court, the three-sport standout (soccer, too) has embraced his role on the field, and his effort has helped the undefeated Bearcats return to the Class B football final.
As a fullback for most of the season in a powerful ground attack, the senior workhorse selflessly tried to do what is best for the feature backs in the offense, chew up the tough yards and make their lives easier.
“Whenever I get a chance to run the ball, I want to get as many yards as possible to help make their lives easier so they can do what they do,” DeOllos said. “With every great team, you have to have role players, and I’m glad that I get to fill that role.
“As long as we keep winning, I have no problem with it.”
His role has taken a turn. He’s now the starting running back. Jacob Krul, who made a mighty 1-2 punch with quarterback Sabastian Harsh, broke his foot in the quarterfinals and had surgery the day his teammates went to Omaha to bring home a 60-53 win over Roncalli in the semifinals.
Winding down his final season as a four-year starter for the Bearcats, DeOllos has enjoyed lots of success not only in the win column, but the stat column as well.
In 43 games, DeOllos has gained 1,583 yards with 1,153 on the ground and 24 total touchdowns. He averages about 6 yards per carry this season and 6.4 yards per carry in his career. As a kickoff returner, DeOllos is averaging 30.1 yards per return and has piled up 241 yards and a touchdown in that department this season. He has 2,233 all-purpose yards in his career.
In many instances, athletes like DeOllos focus on one side of the ball. However, he has a knack for finding his way onto the field no matter the situation.
On defense, DeOllos fills the role as an outside linebacker who has racked up seven tackles for loss and 16 quarterback hurries. His other defensive totals are 30 tackles with 1.5 sacks (13 lost yards), four forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and two blocked punts. The more recent block was on a Roncalli punt that he fell on in the end zone in the third quarter to help the Bearcats build a 57-33 advantage.
“I’m just trying to play to the best of my abilities,” DeOllos said. “I want to score when I have the ball, or make a big tackle or cause a fumble on defense. You just have to make plays. I was glad I was in the position to make those plays and it helped us win, so I’m happy.”
Under the direction of Joe Benson, who retired after last season, the Bearcats have progressively moved closer to elite status, going 32-5 since DeOllos’ freshman season. Despite the departure of Benson, the Bearcats have stayed on course under former offensive coordinator and new head coach Jud Hall, who has steered Scottsbluff to a 12-0 record and a spot in Monday’s 7:15 p.m. final in Memorial Stadium in Lincoln against defending champion Omaha Skutt.
In DeOllos’ playoff career, the Bearcats bowed out in the first round of the 2016 playoffs with a 38-35 loss to Blair, lost to eventual state champion York 35-20 in 2017 and lost last season’s title game to Skutt 48-27.
DeOllos said he believes this is the team that may have what it takes to bag the big fish and fill that one spot in the Scottsbluff football trophy case that has eluded it thus far.
“This might be the best team I’ve ever played with,” he said. “They’re willing to do whatever they have to do to win. It’s just a great group of guys and they love to compete.”