High school football: Football MVPs led teams to state titles
“Going into the playoffs he was peeking as well as the rest of the team,” said Timpview coach Cary Whittingham. “He got better and better continually as the year went on.”
Lloyd threw at least three touchdowns in every game but one, eventually tying the state record of 53 touchdown passes set by Logan’s Riley Nelson in 2005. He finished with 3,894 yards and a 63 percent completion percentage.
Like all of his teammates, Lloyd excelled in the playoffs by not dwelling on the late-season drama regarding an ineligible player that forced the T-Birds to forfeit several games.
“He kept it all in perspective just like the rest of the team did, and didn’t let it effect his performance,” said Whittingham, who added that everyone felt a huge sense of accomplishment after winning the title, “'Cause it was a tough road to get there.”
Indeed it was as Timpview beat Logan, Woods Cross, East and Mountain Crest en route to the title. In those four games alone Lloyd passed for 1,171 yards with 15 TDs and one interception.
As of now, Lloyd has no scholarship offers from any schools. Whittingham believes schools are scared off by his QB’s arm strength, but he believes Lloyd has the intangibles and athleticism to make up for it with hard work.
“He’s the kind of kid you get him into the weight room and develop that and that can improve. That might be a non-issue in the future,” Whittingham said.
Blake Barney, Dixie
When the 3A state tournament got underway, nobody was really talking about Dixie as a state title contender. Four weeks later, nobody could stop talking about Dixie quarterback Blake Barney.
On the biggest stage of his career at Rice-Eccles Stadium, he delivered two unbelievable performances to lead Dixie to its first title since 1998.
In a snowy semifinal against a Juan Diego team that beat Dixie in the playoffs 41-0 a year earlier, Barney showed tremendous versatility knowing his team wouldn’t be able to pass. He still came up huge in leading Dixie to the 14-13 victory by carrying the ball 23 times for 107 yards and both touchdowns.
The weather was much better in the championship against Spanish Fork a week later, and Barney played like a man on a mission. He passed for 299 yards, rushed for 173 more and racked up six total touchdowns — tying the state championship game record.
His performance was the culmination of a great three-year career as Dixie’s starting QB.
“Sometimes you can start as a sophomore and not get any better, but I thought he got better every year and every time he played the game. He kind of matured and developed into a good quarterback,” said Dixie coach Blaine Monkres.
After racking up 2,805 passing yards and 1,321 rushing yards this season, Barney graduates with 9,157 yards of total offense and 89 touchdowns to his credit.
Most importantly, though, he led Dixie to a state title nobody thought possible.
“He gives credit back to his offensive line and his receivers, and realizes without team success he’s not going to have success as an individual,” Monkres said.
Barney already has an offer from Dixie State and is getting mild interest from Weber State and Southern Utah.
Austin Jackson, Manti
Others players in 2A might’ve had better statistical seasons than Austin Jackson, but it’s tough to find anyone that was more valuable.