High school football: Who is the greatest team in Utah prep football history?
“Those guys were very competitive,” Logan coach Mike Favero said. “Our practices were like games on Friday nights. It’s kind of rare to get kids to compete at such a high level on a daily basis. I mean it was a war everyday in practice. That’s what made those guys so great.”
Offensively, Logan’s per game average in 2005 was second only to ’10 Bingham (49.1 ppg). Other teams that dropped 40-plus points every Friday night were 2012 Jordan (47.5 ppg), ‘11 Logan (43.6 ppg), ‘98 San Juan (42.5 ppg), ‘07 Timpview (42 ppg), ‘99 Skyline (41.5 ppg) and ‘03 Hunter (41 ppg).
Eight teams featured a player honored as Mr. Football and 11 showcased the MVP of the classification. Six had both: ‘03 Hunter, ‘99 Skyline, ‘12 Jordan, ‘04 Bear River (Jason Zundel earned both) and ‘08 Timpview. However, only one team uniquely displayed two Mr. Football recipients and a 5A MVP recipient: 2007 Alta (13-1).
That year, Boo Andersen (2007 Mr. Football), Sausan Shakerin (2006 Mr. Football) and Ryan Rosenvall (5A MVP) along with four others were named to the Deseret News first team.
“The coaches, we definitely felt the pressure. There were times the coaching staff had big-time blowups after games. We knew we had the best team in the state, and anything other than a championship was a disappointment. It weighed on us heavily,” said Pleasant Grove coach Les Hamilton, who coached Alta from 2005-10. “ That 2007 team, in my opinion, is the greatest high school football team I’ve ever been around — very, very special.”
The 2003 Hunter team is possibly the most physically imposing team on the list. The Wolverines, who sent nearly 20 players to the next level, ran the table behind Ray Feinga, Tauni Vakapuna and Matt Asiata.
“They were a pretty rough bunch,” Wes Wilcken, who coached Hunter from 1999-2007, said. “I used to refer to them as ‘brutality at it’s finest.’ In my 25 years coaching in Utah, it’s one of the better teams I’ve seen — if not the best. Physicality-wise I don’t know if that could be matched. It was one of those things that it didn’t matter what got in our way.”
It’s difficult to peg the greatest team by comparing year-to-year champions from different classifications. There will always be arguments in favor of and against every team. So, let the debate rage on.
Which individual team really is the greatest the state has ever seen?
Deseret News sports writer Trevor Phibbs was a member of the 2007 Alta High football team. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @TPhibbsDNews
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