SOUTH JORDAN — Bingham High is fully aware of what a drought feels like. It went 60 years between championships before the 2006 team captured the elusive trophy. Now, two years removed since their last title run, the Miners are thirsty.
“We feel that we run the type of program, and the expectations — flat out — if we don’t win it it’s going to be a disappointment,” Bingham coach Dave Peck said. “That’s not going to change this year. We feel like we’ve got good kids, and we don’t make any excuses when we get beat. At the end of the day, on a year-round basis, we do it the right way, and our expectations are to be the last team standing. We will be disappointed again this year if we’re not.”
For the fourth consecutive preseason, the Miners claimed the top spot in the Deseret News Top 25, which is determined by coaches’ votes collected through questionnaires. Hype is accompanied by publicity, and Bingham has plenty of that.
Its first three games — Bonneville, Idaho (ESPNU), Herriman (KUTV) and Valor Christian, Colorado (Root Sports) — are all televised.
“I think right now in USA Today we’re ranked No. 41,” Peck said. “If we go 3-0 we’re going to be top 20 because of the type of teams we’re playing.”
In a recent practice the offense scored on three straight drives during team drills while primarily using three different quarterbacks. However, Peck said that junior Kyle Gearig will be calling the shots come Aug. 24.
“He’s probably the least experienced, but really cool-headed,” Peck said of Gearig. “We love how he’s coming along. “Nobody knows anything about this kid. He wasn’t even our sophomore starting quarterback. He’s a great athlete, and we believe at the end of the day he’s an All-State quarterback. We’ve got three other good quarterbacks — we’re deep at that position — but we have this gut feeling that Kyle is going to be something special.”
The Miners measure athletic ability through a series of drills referring to the “Bingham Agility” circuit. Peck explained that Gearig tested off the charts.
“In 29 years he’s the fastest kid I’ve ever had,” Peck said. “He’s got great natural ability. If he gets out in the open, nobody is going to catch him if he does scramble.
“But you know what? Until we actually play some games, that is going to be a question mark,” Peck continued. “To be honest, it could hurt us a little the first couple. If we end up being 3-0 at the end of the three games, then we’re in good shape because he’s going to continue to get better.”
Bingham Miners at a glance
Coach: Dave Peck’s success with Bingham is virtually unprecedented. In what will be his 14th year with the Miners he’s garnered a 128-35 record, and in 18 years of coaching he’s posted a 155-69 overall record. He is a graduate of Cyprus High and Southern Utah University.
(6 returning starters; multiple offense)
Bingham has six returning starters on the offensive side of the ball — five will be upfront. Peck and offensive line coach Keith Chatelain described the group as one of the best the program has had in recent years.
“We have five of our front six guys, if you count the tight end, back,” Peck said. “Four of them played every single game, and the fifth one started in at least half of the games. I would definitely say we expect that group to be coming along.”