Happy Haskell

Bentonville head coach Barry Lunney has a wealth of football talent, something that has just gotten better with the addition of tailback Courtney Haskell (5-11, 202, 4.4), who had 269 yards via the air and ground Friday night in his team's win over Fayetteville.

Bentonville tailback Courtney Haskell is loving life right now.

Not only is the transfer from Warren playing on arguably the best high school football team in the state, he is a major cog in its success.

That was certainly the case Friday night with Haskell (5-11, 202, 4.4) accounting for 3 scores while gaining 150 yards rushing on 13 carries and catching 3 passes for another 119 yards in his team's 45-10 rout at Fayetteville.

"This is all very exciting for me," Haskell said. "This is such a great team and I have such great teammates. I love them all. I am happy to just be a part of this team."

Bentonville (4-0, 1-0), who is trying to repeat as the Class 7A state champ, hopes to keep its momentum going at Fort Smith Southside this Friday

"We are kicking," said Haskell, who has interest in Arkansas and vice-versa. "We had good practices all week and that's what we will do to prepare for the next team."

Haskell and fellow senior running back Shane Boedecker run behind a huge offensive line that has Division I prospects in seniors Chase Peterson (6-4, 280) and Jon Mark Holden (6-2, 270) and junior Marcus Danenhauer (6-5, 305).

"They are just great at what they do," said Haskell, who has run for 425 yards this season. "All I know is they do their job and I take advantage of the holes they put there for me."

Of all his big plays on Friday, Haskell's screen pass that he caught from quarterback Pearson Gean and took 95 yards was the definite highlight.

"We gave a fake and I just ran a wheel," Haskell said. "P threw it to me and I just had to go and thankfully I took it to the house."

That play was certainly a thing of beauty for Bentonville head coach Barry Lunney, Sr, who also saw Haskell score on runs of 1 and 73 yards.

"He's pretty fast," Lunney said. "You can't coach that. You get the ball in his hands and good things happen. He is a very gifted young man."

Lunney also loves how good a teammate Haskell is for the Tigers.

"He is a cheerleader, he loves it – this is his haven," Haskell said. "He just loves playing and loves practice. He is a very unique young man athletically."

Lunney had earlier compared Haskell to legendary Pine Bluff running back Basil Shabazz and remains extremely high on the young man.

"I have had some very good running backs and some good skill kids over the years," Lunney said. "I've been very blessed, but I have never had one that has had that burst like he does. Somebody can cut him to the sideline, but he just redirects and accelerates."

Haskell is drawing some interest from Division I colleges, but those schools are seemingly waiting to see if his academics improve and to see if he can make it through a year without injury for the first time in three seasons.

"It's still a wait and see thing," Lunney said. He's got to keep doing what he is doing on the field and he has got to keep doing what he is doing in the classroom. If he does, it will all take care of itself."

Haskell said he is just happy to let that happen.

"I am just having fun and trying to do whatever I can to help us win," Haskell said. "There's enough time for all that after the season."

Courtney Haskell

Courtney Haskell, Barry Lunney, Sr.

Courtney Haskell gains yards against Nettleton.

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