Just two of the six coaches in this week's finals have won state championships: Logan's Mike Favero (three) and Fremont's Kory Bosgieter (one, at Weber).
Three others make their first title game appearance: East's Brandon Matich, Lone Peak's Tony McGeary and Desert Hills' Jake Nelson. They're trying to become first coaches to win a state championship in their first attempt since Ryan Higgs captured the 1A title at North Sevier in 2008.
The sixth coach, Hurricane's Chris Homer, is in the finals for the fourth straight year, still seeking that elusive state crown.
Of the six schools, only East and Logan, both in 4A, have claimed state championships.
Class 5A Finals – Fremont (10-2) vs. Lone Peak (13-0)
Fremont is in the title contest for the second straight year while Lone Peak last made the finals in 2004. Both are 0-2 in championship games.
Series history: Tied 1-1. Lone Peak won a first round game in 2000 while Fremont sent the Knights packing in the 2010 semifinals.
Last meeting: Fremont 20-14 on Nov. 11, 2010 in the 5A semifinals at the U.
Coach vs. Coach: Fremont's Kory Bosgieter is 1-0 vs. LP's Tony McGeary. Both are in their fourth season at their current schools.
Fremont Quick Facts
Opened in 1994, 18th season. Finals record: 0-2. Playoff record (15th appearance): 21-14 (.600).
Current win streak: 8.
Championship game history:
1995, lost to Skyline 21-20 – OT (5A).
2010, lost to Bingham 30-7 (5A).
Coach: Kory Bosgieter is 27-18 (.600) in his fourth season at Fremont, from 2008-11. Overall, he's 76-59 (.563) in his 13th season, including 49-41 in nine years at Weber High from 1994-2002.
Bosgieter took the Silver Wolves from 1-9 his first year, to 5-5 in 2009, to back-to-back 10-win seasons.
Playoff record at Fremont, third appearance: 6-2. Overall, eighth appearance: 10-6 (.625) (4-4 at Weber).
Finals record: 1-1 (won at Weber in 1999).
Lone Peak Quick Facts
Opened in 1997, 15th season. Finals record: 0-2. Playoff record (13th appearance): 18-12 (.600).
Current win streak: 13, a school record.
Championship game history:
2002, lost to Bountiful 23-20 (4A)
2004, lost to Timpview 42-0 (4A)
Coach: Tony McGeary is 40-9 (.816) in his fourth season, since 2008. He won seven games his first year, nine his second and 11 last year.
Playoff record, fourth appearance: 6-3. Under his direction, the Knights have advanced from the first round in his first season, to the quarterfinals in his second and to the semifinals last year.
Finals record: first appearance.
Extra Point 1: Fremont is hoping to win 11 games for the second time in school history. The last? 2010.
Extra Point 2: Lone Peak is gunning for its first undefeated season. The Knights' previous best start was in 2006 when they won their first seven games. With 13 victories, they've surpassed their most wins in a season, 11 in 2002 and 2010.
Extra Point 3: Lone Peak has posted its second consecutive double-digit win season and fourth in school history.
Class 4A Finals – East (12-1) vs. Logan (13-0)
East won state titles when these schools squared off in the second and third championship games back in 1920 and 1921. The Leopards also won state honors over the Grizzles in 1956. Since then, until this season – 55 years – they faced each other only in a 1996 first round game.
Series history: East leads 9-1-2.
Last meeting: Logan 46-14 on Oct. 19 (Week 10) at East.
Coach vs. Coach: Logan's Mike Favero is 4-2 vs. East's Brandon Match (including a 3-2 record when Matich was at Park City from 2005-09).
East Quick Facts
Began playing football in 1914, 98th season. State championships: 16 (last in 1996). Finals record: 12-2-1. Playoff record (39th appearance): 46-23-2 (.662).
Current winning streak: 3.
Championship game history:
1919, beat Payson 79-0
1920, beat Logan 14-6
1921, beat Logan 30-0
1922, beat Box Elder 38-0
1923, beat Granite 6-0
1926, tied Box Elder 7-7 (both are state champions)
1952, beat Weber 27-6 (A)
1953, beat Ogden 13-0 (A)
1955, beat Murray 27-0 (A)
1956, beat Logan 34-6 (A)
1964, beat Bountiful 14-6 (A)
1973, lost to West 36-22 (4A)
1974, beat West 14-7 (4A)
1995, lost to Box Elder 51-28 (4A)
1996, beat Timpview 37-0 (4A)
East's three other state championships were in 1917, 1925 and 1943. From 1898 to 1917, championships were based on season records. In 1925, East and West tied 0-0 in one semifinal and Payson and South Sevier tied 0-0 in the other. All four were awarded state titles. In 1943, East and Davis won semifinals, but Davis refused to play in the Class A championship game when the UHSAA changed the bracketing from the original arrangement. Both were declared champions.
Coach: Brandon Matich is 20-4 in his second year at East. He's 59-22 (.728) overall including 39-18 in five seasons at Park City from 2005-09.
Playoff record, sixth appearance: 7-5 (.583) including 4-1 at East and 3-4 at Park City.
Finals record: first appearance (made semifinals at Park City in 2008 and 2009).
Logan Quick Facts
Began its football program in 1919, 93rd season. Finals record: 6-8 (.429). Last championship: 2007. Playoff record (45th appearance): 48-38 (.558).
Current winning streak: 13 (school record is 17 from 1977-1979).
Championship game history:
1920, lost to East 27-0
1921, lost to East 30-0
1931, lost to Jordan 18-0
1932, lost to Granite 13-0
1947, lost to Jordan 21-6 (A)
1956, lost to East 34-6 (A)
1968, lost to Ogden 40-13 (A)
1978, beat Ben Lomond 35-7 (3A)
1988, beat Pleasant Grove 44-12 (3A)
1989, beat Woods Cross 28-14 (3A)
2000, beat Highland 14-0 (4A)
2003, lost to Bountiful 21-13 (4A)
2005, beat Pine View 56-21 (3A)
2007, beat Judge Memorial 28-12 (3A)
Coach: Mike Favero is 111-50 (.689) in his 13th season, since 1999.
Playoff record, 12th appearance: 23-8 (.742).
Finals record: 3-1.
Extra Point 1: Just two seasons ago, Logan was 3-7 and East went 1-8.
Extra Point 2: East and Logan collide in the finals for the fourth time. Only Beaver and Kanab have met more times – seven – for the title. Five other pairs have battled four times in the finals, most recently Duchesne and Rich. Box Elder-Jordan, Judge-Payson, Orem-Skyline and San Juan-South Summit are the others.
Extra Point 3: East's .662 winning percent in the postseason ranks fifth behind only Juan Diego, Skyline, Timpview and Snow Canyon.
Extra Point 4: Logan's off to its best-ever start, surpassing the 12-0 Grizzlies of 1978. That was Logan's only undefeated season.
Extra Point 5: Logan has also matched its most-ever win season, 2005, when the Grizzlies were 13-1.
Extra Point 6: Logan has scored 592 points this season, the fifth most in state history. But it's not a school record. The 2005 Grizzlies scored 666 in 14 games, second on the all-time list. Dixie racked up 678 points in 13 contests in 1972. Bingham's 2010 juggernaut (638 points) is the only other team to score more than 600 in a season.
Extra Point 7: Favero is trying for his fourth state crown. Just 11 coaches have won more in Utah prep history.
Extra Point 8: East and Logan met twice during the same season one other time: 1920 when East won the season opener 40-6 on Oct. 2 and the state championship by 27-0 on Dec. 11. Both games were played at Logan. Obviously, the season started and ended a little later than it does now.
Extra Point 9: Before this year, East had outscored Logan 228-18 in 11 previous contests and never allowed more than six Grizzly points in a game. Even with Logan's 46-14 victory, the Grizzlies still have a substantial point – and game – deficit to make up.
Extra Point 10: East won four of its championships by winning just a single playoff game, in 1920, 1943, 1952 and 1953.
Extra Point 11: East was 10-0-1 in championship games from 1920 through the 1960s, but is 2-2 since. Logan, on the other hand, lost its first seven title contests from 1920 through the '60s, but is 6-1 since.
Class 3A Finals – Hurricane (12-0) vs. Desert Hills (9-3)
This game marks the first time that two teams from the same region in 3A, 4A or 5A have clashed in the finals since 2005. (Skyline knocked off Brighton in 5A.) It's also the first all-southern Utah championship since Dixie beat Cedar for the 3A crown in 1998.
Series History: Hurricane leads 3-1 (DH won in 2009).
Last meeting: Hurricane 35-8 on Oct. 13 (Week 9) at Desert Hills.
Coach vs. Coach: Hurricane's Chris Homer is 5-4 vs. Desert Hills' Jake Nelson (including 3-3 record when Nelson was at Dixie from 2002-07).
Hurricane Quick Facts
Hurricane began its 11-man grid program in 1949, 63rd season. Finals record: 0-6. Playoff record (31st appearance): 24-30 (.444). From 1939-48, Hurricane played six-man football and won the 1947 and '48 titles.
Current winning streak: 12, ties 2005 school record.
Championship game history:
1982, lost to Millard 33-14 (2A)
1983, lost to Morgan 15-0 (2A)
1989, lost to San Juan 34-16 (2A)
2008, lost to Juan Diego 21-18 (3A)
2009, lost to Juan Diego 12-10 (3A)
2010, lost to Juan Diego 10-7 (3A)
Coach: Chris Homer is 75-42 (.641) in his tenth season, since 2002.
Playoff record, eighth appearance: 14-7 (.667).
Finals record: 0-3.
Desert Hills Quick Facts
Opened 2008, fourth season. Finals record: first appearance. Playoff record (fourth appearance): 4-3 (.571).
Current winning streak: 3.
Coach: Jake Nelson is 22-11 at DH in three seasons, since 2009, and is 57-42 (.576) in nine years overall, including 35-31 at Dixie from 2002-07.
He's coaching his 100th career contest (and 34th at DH).
Playoff record at DH, third appearance: 4-2. Overall, ninth appearance: 9-8 (.529) including 5-6 at Dixie.
Finals record: first appearance (made semifinals in 2004 and 2006 at Dixie).
Extra Point 1: Hurricane makes its fourth consecutive championship. Only five other schools have more: Skyline, 9 (1995-2003, won five titles); Kanab, 8 (1981-88, won four); and three with 5, Beaver (1969-73, won three), East (1919-23, won five), and Judge (1969-73, won three).
Other recent schools with four straight finals: Timpview (2006-09, won 4) and Kanab (2005-08, won two).
Extra Point 2: Hurricane has matched its best ever start (2005) and tied its most ever wins (2008, 2008 and 2010). The Tigers have never had an undefeated season.
Extra Point 3: Hurricane has 47 wins from 2008-11. Only Juan Diego has more – 49 – during those four seasons.
Extra Point 4: Last week Hurricane became the third school to win three playoff games at least four years in a row. Skyline won three tournament games over a nine-year span (1995-2003) and Timpview won three over four seasons (2006-09).
Extra Point 5: Only five schools have played more seasons of football than Hurricane without winning a state football title (Park City, North Sanpete, Spanish Fork, Wasatch and Cedar).
Extra Point 6: Desert Hills enjoys its most season wins with nine. The previous high was seven in 2010.
Extra Point 7: The Thunder are trying to become just the second team to prevent a top-seed from claiming the state crown over the past five years. In all five classifications, only region champions have won state titles from 2007 on, except for Highland, which captured the 4A title as a No. 2 seed last year.
Extra Point 8: DH is also trying to become first team to win state championship in its first ever appearance since North Sevier in 2008.
Extra Point 9: Desert Hills is the youngest school to reach the championship game since Juan Diego advanced to the 2003 finals in its third season and won the 2A title.
Extra Point 10: Only 26 of the previous 269 state champions have endured three or more losses. DH is trying to become the 27th.
East, Fremont and Desert Hills will try to upset their unbeaten opponents Friday and join 52 other teams that have spoiled a perfect season in a championship game. The last to do that was Timpview beating Cottonwood in 2008, but the T-birds were also undefeated. The last team with losses to play spoiler was in 2005: Grand entered the 2A title bout at 8-2, but upended 11-0 San Juan.
If Logan, Lone Peak and Hurricane come through unscathed, they'll join Duchesne and make 2011 the first year that four teams have celebrated undefeated championship seasons. There have been three unbeaten teams three times before, most recently in 2001 when Millard, Monticello and Northridge pulled off the feat.
In addition, Logan and Lone Peak will try and join just three other schools that have won a state-record 14 games in a season. Bingham (2006), Hunter (2003) and Juan Diego (2008) are the others.
Current Winning Streaks
1. Duchesne – 22
2. Logan, Lone Peak – 13
4. Hurricane – 12
5. Manti – 10
6. Fremont – 8
7. Desert Hills, East – 3
9. Bear River, Bonneville, Pine View, Union – 1
For the Record – D.J. Nelson
A lot to catch up on, so here goes.
Besides setting the record for Single-Game Total Offense last week (606 yards), Nelson continues to improve his position in the record book in numerous other categories.
In Season records, he's now third in Total Offense (4,928) but needs just 59 to move ahead of Alex Hart (4,985 for Jordan, 2009) into second behind big brother Riley (5,815 in 2005). D.J. is second in Touchdown Passes (48), but just five behind Riley. He's second in Touchdowns-Responsible-For (71), 13 behind Riley.
In other Season records, he's fifth in Passes Completed (259), 12th in all-time Passing Yards (3,345) and 13th in Passes Attempted (404).
In Career categories, D.J. is third in Touchdowns-Responsible-For (101), ninth in Total Offense (7,142) and tenth in Touchdown Passes (68).
While nowhere near a record, D.J. leads the state in rushes this season with 244.
He may not surpass any of Riley's records, but he may attain what Riley never did: an undefeated season for the Grizzlies.
More For the Record
Some updates of several others who are still playing or concluded their season last week, listed alphabetically:
Chase Hansen (Lone Peak) is now 11th in Career Total Offense (6,636), 13th in Season TD Passes (37), 15th in Career Touchdowns-Responsible-For (77) and 16th in Season Total Offense (3,824).
Austin Kafentzis (Jordan) finished fifth in Season Total Offense (3,565) and 15th in Season Passing Yards (3,188).
Hayden Nielsen completed his three years at Spanish Fork in the Top-10 in a slew of Career categories: fourth in Total Offense (9,451); fourth in Passing Yards (7,570); tied for fourth in TD Passes (78); tied for fourth in TDs-Responsible-For (99), fifth in Completions (495) and seventh in Passing Attempts (837).
Ricky Shumway (Timpview) tied for fourth in Season Touchdown Receptions (19) and finished sixth in Career TD Receptions (31).
John Ursua split his career at Westlake and Cedar but ended up 10th in Career Total Offense (6,711) and 11th in Career TDs-Responsible-For (87).
In Season Extra Points, Jake Thompson (Logan) is tied for fourth (73) and Trevor Robb (Lone Peak) is tied for eighth (68).
In Career Extra Points, Hayes Hicken (Highland) finished third (159), Tyler Solorzano (Timpview), fourth (147) and Jake Thompson is currently fifth (143) and likely to move up by Friday night.
Duchesne averaged 48.67 points in its three postseason games, the seventh most in a playoff series of at least three games. It's the most since Logan averaged 50.25 ppg in 2005. Duchesne's winning margin of 37.0 ppg in the playoffs is the eighth highest and most since Bear River whacked its opponents by 39.0 ppg in 2004.
From Last Week
In capturing its third championship, 12-0 Duchesne claimed its second undefeated season in its 41-year history. (The Eagles went 13-0 in 2006.) Layton Christian didn't complete a pass in the game and so Duchesne became one of 13 teams to allow zero passing yards in a championship. (Two others actually held their opponents to negative passing yards: Mountain Crest held Box Elder to minus-5 in 2001 and Kanab held North Summit to negative-3 yards in 1974.)
Also in the 1A final, LCA's Kyle Yockey set a title game record by booting an 85-yard punt, besting a 72-yarder by Beaver's Travis Hugh (1990). Maybe the venue – the wind or elevation or both – was a factor. It's the first championship that's been played in as mountainous a location as Wasatch High.
In the 2A battle, despite his team losing, Millard's Jesse Rhodes became the 40th Utah gridder to rush for over 3,000 career yards – he finished with 3,012. Teammate Pancho Alcala ended up in 26th place with 3,327 Career Rushing Yards.
Annual Scoring Champs
Offense: Logan is on track to snare honors for 2011, although its total points obviously won't be known until Friday afternoon. The Grizzles average 45.5 ppg. To catch Logan, Hurricane would have to put up 60 on DH while the Logan failed to score against East. It's the third time in seven seasons Logan has topped the state in scoring offense (2005 and 2008, too).
Defense: San Juan allowed just 8.4 ppg, capturing the scoring defense trophy for the second straight year. None of the remaining finalists can match that even if they shut out their opponents this week.
Margin: Duchesne defeated its foes by an average of 33.2 ppg, the largest margin of victory this season. The only way the Eagles could lose the scoring margin title is if Logan defeats East by 95 points.
Championship Game Numbers Trivia
Friday will see the 259th, 260th and 261st championship games played, but teams will claim the 270th, 271st and 272nd trophies. The difference of 11 is because three contests ended in ties, awarding trophies to an additional three teams, four more got state titles when the 1925 semifinals (East vs. West and Payson vs. South Sevier) ended in scoreless ties and another four were declared champs when Box Elder and Tooele refused to meet in the 1928 championship and Davis wouldn't play East in the 1943 finals.
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Until 1917, state championships were determined by season records. State playoffs were to start in 1918, but the Spanish Flu caused the season to be cancelled after a total of just five games had been played.
Skyline has won the most championship games, 14, but West has the most state titles, 21, with 14 of those coming between 1898 and 1917, before title contests were played. East has the most state crowns, 15, during the championship-game years (1919-2010), but two of those were awarded because of a semifinal tie and when Davis wouldn't play the Leopards in 1943.
Millard now has the most championship game appearances, 21.
See you on the sidelines.