Note: North Sevier finished with a 0-9 record and landed in last place in Region 2A North by posting a 0-7 record in 2012. The Wolves failed to qualify for the playoffs.
SALINA — After suffering through a brutal 0-9 campaign in 2012, the North Sevier Wolves and newly hired head coach Chuck Woodhouse are headed back to the drawing board.
"We expect to win a few games and kind of change the mentality around here. We want to change how the people here in Salina view our football team," said Woodhouse.
By adding a new coach and having several key starters returning this season, the excitement and expectations are at an all-time high for North Sevier.
Despite losing such a dominant force on the defensive end as Colton Robbins, who totaled 97 tackles, averaged a staggering 10.8 TPG, and racked up an impressive 20 tackles in a single game to lead the Wolves in 2012, North Sevier has four of its top tacklers back for the 2013 season.
"We lost our leading tackler, but we have our next four leading tacklers all back. So, I'm hoping we can replace him with those four guys. We'll have Desmond Honeycutt and Brendon Sorenson back, and hopefully they'll be able to fill those holes on defense," said Woodhouse. "We are going to be very young, but we are experienced and we are very talented."
However, despite its lack of seniors on the squad, North Sevier has a total of 13 returning starters — nine of whom will play on both sides of the ball — to give the Wolves some experience and talent on the field.
Returning for the Wolves in the trenches are their two top rushers from 2012, Brendon Sorenson and Desmond Honeycutt. Last season, Sorenson ran for 258 yards and one TD on 77 carries, while Honeycutt added 173 on 39 carries himself. The two backs are expected to get most of the work in the backfield while also anchoring the Wolves' defense. The two combined for 99 tackles last season.
"We have really high expectations for both of them as running backs. They are both coming back for their senior seasons, and we expect them to get the bulk of the carries," said Woodhouse. "Between the two of them, they'll also be our defense. We are just excited to have them back as leaders, they both got elected as captains, and will hopefully help change what people think of North Sevier football."
Quarterback Fisher Anderson is tentatively projected to return as the starting quarterback, but Preston Snyder is making great strides to compete for the starting job.
Last season, Anderson threw for 1,603 yards with 11 TDs, but also gave up more than double that in interceptions, 24. He also totaled 68 yards on 21 carries.
"Fisher is projected to start. Both quarterbacks look really good right now. Snyder is throwing the ball really well, but he is still learning some of the reads we are doing on offense, so he is a little behind that way," Woodhouse said. "At this point in time, Fisher is projected to be the starter. He had a great year as a freshman last year, and we are hoping we can build off that confidence and make an attempt to win a championship."
Anderson's favorite target from last season, wideout Trent Hampton, is also returning for the Wolves in 2013.
In 2012, Hampton caught 29 passes for 459 yards and eight TDs to lead North Sevier. He also made 29 tackles and is expected to play on both sides of the ball once again this season.
The North Sevier Wolves are completely revamping their program in an attempt to change the mentality of their football program in Salina. Despite coming off a 0-9 season in 2012, coach Woodhouse is excited to bring something new to the table: winning.
"We are not talking about losing anymore. I mean, we are changing the mentality completely," Woodhouse said. "We are playing some really good teams, and I know that. We have a tough schedule ahead of us, and it's been difficult to change the mentality when you're facing that; but we are going to go in expecting to win every game and make a run at a championship."
The North Sevier Wolves open the season at ALA, where Woodhouse was a former coach, at 7 p.m. on Aug. 23.
North Sevier Wolves at a glance
Coach: Chuck Woodhouse is entering his first year as the head coach of the North Sevier Wolves, hoping to bring a completely new football mentality to Salina.
Offense (13 returning starters; pistol/spread/split-back offenses)
North Sevier should be a lot more experienced, efficient and explosive on the offensive end. With so many key contributors returning on the offensive end, expectations have never been higher for the people in Salina. The Wolves will be running a more up-tempo and no huddle offense in an attempt to wear out and run past their opponents. Expect huge things from running backs/defensemen Desmond Honeycutt and Brendon Sorenson, and a breakout year for second-year starting quarterback Fisher Anderson. Anderson will need to eliminate his turnovers; Trent Hampton will have to have yet another huge year as a wideout to help the Wolves become a winning football squad.
Defense (nine returning starters)
The defense had many holes a season ago, aside from Colton Robbins, but should make huge strides in the 2013 season. With four of its five top tacklers returning, including exceptional defensemen Brendon Sorenson, Desmond Honeycutt and Brandon Hales, the Wolves' defense shows significant improvement from last season. The line is fairly young but quite experienced, and should open up some holes for backs Sorenson and Honeycutt.
Coaches Preseason Region 2A South Straw Poll: Seventh
Deseret News Region 2A South predictions: Seventh
Bottom line: With the acquisition of a new head coach and a young but talented squad, big strides will be made for North Sevier in 2013. The Wolves have a total of 13 returning starters — six or seven who are expected to have monstrous years — and should improve drastically. North Sevier's defense will have to have a lot more balance this season, and the younger players on the roster will need to step up to fill the void of Colton Robbins. Sophomore quarterback Fisher Anderson has to take more care of the football and eliminate those interceptions in order for the Wolves to be successful. North Sevier must be successful in its region matchups in order to become a winning program and prove it belongs with the best of them.
North Sevier coaching history
2013 — Chuck Woodhouse (0-0)
2007-12 — Ryan Higgs (18-42)
2004-06 — Paul Torgerson (7-23)
2003 — Nolan Andersen (0-10)
1999-2002 — Stoney Myers (10-29)
1992-98 — Craig Gladwell (26-41)
1991 — David Gray (1-6)
1990 — Juan Henderson (1-7)
1981-89 — Glen Partridge (37-48)
1978-80 — Ron Dalley (11-15)
1974-77 — Glen Partridge (10-19)
1971-73 — Dennis Crane (6-22)
1927-34 — Parley Davis (4-18-1)
1924-26 — unknown (4-9-1)
1922-23 — Mr. Hansen (0-8)
Deseret News MVPs the past 10 years
2008 —Wyatt Mason, RB
Deseret News First Team All-Staters the past 10 years
2010 — Michael Hales, WR/DL
2008 — Josh Bates, RB/LB
2008 — Evan Pettit, OL/DL
2008 — Bobby Robins, Ol/DL
2008 — Riley Tidlund, TE/LB
2007 — Tyler McEown, RB
2007 — Vance Nelson, OL/DL
2005 — Zak Harrison, WR/DE
2005 — Tyrel Torgerson, QB/DE
To view second team and honorable mention All-Staters through the years, check out the Deseret News All-State Archives.
Ryan Love was born and raised in Holladay, Utah and is a full-time student at the University of Utah studying communications. He became a part-time scoreboarder and sports reporter for the Deseret News in October 2012. EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org