Southside’s Landen Haas can play defense, too. He is shown here batting the ball away from a Stuttgart receiver earlier this year.

Landen Haas is a true Southerner.

As quarterback of a Southside team that is 3-2overall,1-1 in conference play and in the thick of the 2-4A race, Haas has already accumulated 1,000 yards of offense and has accounted for 16 touchdowns, either rushing or passing.

His numbers 27-of-50 for 470 yards and six touchdowns just tells half the story of his senior season under center. Haas has also rushed for 564 yards, 10 touchdowns and three 2-point conversions.

“My coaches always told me to run the ball, now isn’t that ironic,” Haas said.

Haas’ family moved into the Southside school district from Melbourne when he was in seventh grade. He started as a runner for the junior team and moved up to varsity as a freshman.

“I started and got ran over on the second play of the game,” Haas said.

Hem made all-conference his sophomore season as a defensive back and made the All-Arkansas underclassman team.

“When I was a junior, I played a little bit of quarterback, receiver and defensive back and against Stuttgart, I broke my collarbone,” Haas said.

On play that ended his season early last year, Haas was able to rehab and get into shape to be the Southerners quarterback this season.

“It was terrible that first week, but after that, it wasn’t too bad,” Haas said.

Southside head coach Brian Reardon had already planned on Haas being the starting quarterback for the 2021 season.

“He has the skills and knows what to do,” Reardon said. “When he is on defense he makes big plays. He has already stopped a touchdown against Stuttgart and one against Clinton.”

Haas likes to be in control when he is on the field.

“I like having the ball in my hands and honestly, I like to control the game,” he said. “I throw it a little bit, but they are set plays. We throw best when the other team doesn’t know we are going to throw it.”

Haas also appreciates his offensive linemen, who have opened the holes for him to run for more than 500 yards.

“I just follow the guard and they lead me through and once I see some space, I take it,” Haas said. “The offensive line are probably the smartest guys in our school. They are all huge and I love to run behind them.”

Cole Weaver, Caden Siler, Dylan Hodge, Alex Cooper and Jacob Dunne are his main blockers.

“Cole and Caden are valedictorian and salutatorian for our class and Alex is a two-time wrestling champion,” Haas said.

So far, Haas has been recruited for college football, however, he awaiting the one that best suits him.

“I depends on what offer I get,” he said. “If I get a big offer, I plan to play football, if I don’t I won’t play.”

Haas’ skills set in football has colleges looking to recruit him as a receiver or a defensive back. But for now his focus is on getting Southside to the playoffs and win a state championship in his senior year.

“It means everything to me to be a Southerner,” he said. “As soon as I got here, my parents were saying that I played running back and I ended up starting over one of my best buddies, Bryson Duncan. I like Southside. The school and the football team feels like a big family. I am super close with my coaches and my team.”

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