3. NORTHRIDGE: Running back Davy Adams is one of the state's best big-play threats, either carrying the ball (1,217 yards rushing and 12 touchdowns last year) or catching it out of the backfield (785 yards and eight more TDs in 2011). But the offensive line is small and inexperienced. The Knights' defense features a strong secondary, led by Adams, Zach Hayes, Chaston Martinez, Hunter Johnson, Dayan Lake, Houston Lacey and Adam Wilson, and fullback/linebacker Dallin Isaacson adds toughness on both sides of the ball. but the D-line also lacks size and experience. 2011 record: 8-4 PLAYOFFS: Lost to Lone Peak, 21-14, in the 5A state quarterfinals.
4. FREMONT: A total of just five starters, and only two on defense, return to a program that has reached the 5A finals in each of the past two seasons. The Tucker Tackle Twins — Tucker Hurd and Tucker Zanone — are three-year starters on the offensive line, and quarterback Jordan Preator is a proven playmaker at quarterback and safety. But a lack of experience on both sides of the ball could hurt the Silver Wolves' chances of a higher finish. And road games against Northridge, Davis and Syracuse won't help, either. 2011 record: 10-3 PLAYOFFS: Lost to Lone Peak, 41-21, in championship game of the 5A state playoffs.
5. LAYTON: The Lancers boast nine returning starters on offense, including quarterback Hunter Evans, running back Willie Uasilaa and receivers Marcus Kemp and Tyler Fox. Zackery Wilding is a strength on both the O-line and at linebacker, and linemen Russ Gamolsen, Johnny Blackmon and Devin Hatch and veteran linebacker Daviaire Dickerson are strong contributors for a defense with six returning starters. Home games against Weber, Davis and Northridge should also help enhance the Lancers' chances of reaching postseason play. 2011 record: 3-7 PLAYOFFS: Did not qualify.
6. WEBER: Quarterback Jason Mann and running back Austin Tesch are proven performers, but Weber's offensive prowess may depend on the progress of its rebuilt O-line. Eight starters return on defense for the Warriors, but they must improve on last year's performance when they allowed an average of over 41 points per game on the way to a winless 0-9 finish. A rugged preseason schedule will prepare Weber for a Region 1 campaign in which the Warriors will play what are likely the league's three best teams — Northridge, Davis and Syracuse — on Weber's home field. 2011 record: 0-9 PLAYOFFS: Did not qualify.