2013 high school football preview: Gunnison Bulldogs hope offseason training will lead to season success
So much of what Gunnison did defensively the past couple of years relied on Braden Harris. Without the Utah State signee, other players will need to step up, but Rogers believes team chemistry will help as well.
“The biggest thing about this year’s team is we work good as a team. We know what our weaknesses and our strongest points are. We know how to push each other and how to keep each other moving,” said Rogers.
Gunnison Bulldogs at a glance
Coach: Yori Ludvigson is now entering his fourth year as head coach at Gunnison, where he’s guided the team to an 8-19 record. Ludvigson is a graduate of Manti High School.
(2 returning starters; Spread offense)
Tyson Moosman takes over at quarterback for Bulldogs, and he’s got a bit of experience in front of him and at wide receiver to help with the transition. Dagan Thomas and Jacob Hatch combined for 23 catches for 306 yards and four touchdowns a year ago. With Gunnison hoping to throw even more this year, that production should go way up. Jayden Rogers takes over at running back for Braden Harris, and he certainly knows what to expect after carrying the ball 35 times last year for 250 yards.
(1 returning starters)
Gunnison wasn’t very good defensively toward the end of last season, so having just one returning starter might not be a bad thing. That one starter is Rogers, who recorded 29 tackles and had two interceptions last year at linebacker. Sophomore McKade Cox, who’s a standout wrestler, has enjoyed a strong summer and could emerge as a regular contributor at linebacker. Newcomers Austin Pickett and Jordan Sorensen will start at defensive end, and the coaching staff believes they’re athletic enough to make plays. A year ago, Gunnison’s secondary was a bit of a liability, but with Thomas and Hatch roaming around back there, defense could actually be a strength.
Coaches preseason 2A North straw poll: Fifth
Deseret News 2A North prediction: Fourth
Bottom line: For a team that might start slow because of inexperience, Gunnison couldn’t have asked for a more favorable schedule. The first five games of the season are all against programs the Bulldogs should be competitive with, and a 4-1 start certainly isn’t out of the question. After the favorable start, the Bulldogs end the season with South Summit, Millard, San Juan and Summit Academy. If Gunnison is competitive in those last four games, and wins even just one, it could end up with a decent playoff seed. If it’s not competitive in that final month, another blowout loss will likely send Gunnison into the winter.
Gunnison coaching history
2010-current — Yori Ludvigson (8-21)
1994-2009 — Rhett Jackson (63-126)
1990-1993 — Ron Dalley (5-22)
Deseret News First Team all-staters the past 10 years
2012 — Braden Harris, RB/LB
2011 — Braden Harris, RB/LB
2010 — Jantz Jensen, TE/LB
2007 — Heston Neal, RB/DB
2006 — Taylor Ashton, RB/LB
2006 — Chad Satterfield, RB/LB
2005 — Ben Dalley, RB/LB
2005 — Joey Crane, RB/LB
2004 — Jack Pay, OL
2003 — Juan Salas, K
To view second team and honorable mention all-staters through the years, check out the Deseret News All-State Archives.
Follow Deseret News prep editor James Edward on Twitter @DNewsPreps