Everyone going down on that bus, to a man, believes we can figure out a way to pull this one out. My job is to put the guys in good spots and I believe we have the players here to respond. —Bingham coach Dave Peck
SOUTH JORDAN — Bingham isn’t traveling down to Las Vegas just to show up. Not if coach Dave Peck has anything to do with it.
At Wednesday’s practice, the always-passionate Peck was a bit more fiery than usual when addressing players before taking the practice field and running them through drills.
“We want this one. We want it bad, and I think we can get it,” Peck said. “It’s a big opportunity for us and I think we’re going to surprise some people. We‘re not going down there to just give them a good game. We‘re going down there to win.”
At 6 o’clock in the morning Thursday, the Bingham football team will board buses to travel down to Las Vegas to take on Bishop Gorman (Nevada), a team many consider the best in the country. USA Today has the Gaels ranked No. 1 in its top 25 poll, and all others have them ranked in the top 10.
Indeed, taking on Bishop Gorman Friday night is nothing short of a monumental task. But Bingham has been there before.
In 2009 Peck took Bingham down to Dallas to play tough in a loss to eventual Texas state champion Euless Trinity. The last two seasons saw the Miners take down Colorado’s Valor Christian, a program that is widely regarded as one of that state’s best.
“We’re used to playing big games here at Bingham,” Peck said. “We’re not afraid to play anyone here.”
Bingham is also fresh off a highly successful 14-0 state championship season a year ago and is 2-0 this season. Sixteen-straight wins have the players brimming with confidence.
“Everyone going down on that bus, to a man, believes we can figure out a way to pull this one out,” Peck said. “My job is to put the guys in good spots and I believe we have the players here to respond.”
Getting his players to respond to his directives is something Peck does as well as any coach, and he has the record to prove it. Four 5A state championships since 2006 along with eight region championships in 13 years speak loudly to his credentials.
Despite Bingham’s lengthy list of accomplishments under Peck, Friday’s game could top all of them.
“I think a win in this game would be bigger than any state championship we’ve had here,” Peck said. “I think it would be an amazing thing for not just us, but for the state. I feel the teams here in the state do things right, by and large, and we want to represent that as best we can.”
Fortunately for Bingham, it will take to Las Vegas a solid core of senior leadership, including quarterback Kyle Gearig, linebacker Daniel Langi, and defensive backs Kade Cloward, Dominieke Jones and Chase Messervy — among others.
Meanwhile, Peck believes it's his underclassmen who could make the biggest difference Friday.
"We know what our seniors can do. They've been there and they know how to play in a game like this," Peck said. "It's now up to our underclassmen and we don't know yet. I mean, we don't know how they'll respond to traveling, staying overnight in a hotel and all that. We'll find out Friday, but we're hoping, and I'm confident they'll respond. I believe we can win, but I can also guarantee that no matter what happens we'll represent well and represent with class."