Artesia HS has one of the most storied traditions in the entire state. Each and every year they produce top notch teams and top notch talent. This past season they won another state title riding the arm of all everything QB Landry Jones. Jones is graduating this year, so the Bulldogs will need to replace his leadership. Don't expect that to be much of an issue this year Artesia fans, the Bulldogs return a ton of talent on the defensive side of the ball. One of their top players returning will also be one of the top overall players in the state in LB Dallas Bollema.
Bollema had a tremendous 2007, collecting 177 total tackles and anchoring the defense for the state champs. He was really a machine on the football field all season long, including an amazing 22 total tackles against Roswell and 17 against Kirtland Central. Most expect Bollema to be even better in 2008, reason being is that most of the talent Artesia returns is on the defensive side of the ball, so teams won't be able to just game plan around this playmaking safety.
From a recruiting standpoint, we have no doubt that colleges will at least take a look at Bollema. He isn't the biggest LB in the world checking in at 6'1 and 200 pounds, but he is a great tackler and he has great speed. He is also a great athlete with evidence being he also was a part time punt returner last season. In today's day an age of defensive football, the name of the game is speed. If guys can run and are good tacklers when they get to the point of contact, they will have a chance to play in college.