You really couldn't have asked for much more on the opening night of the 2008 high school football season.
There was an absolute thriller at Jordan High between the Beetdiggers and Northridge, a stunning upset at Skyline with the Eagles beating Bingham, history-making wins by Syracuse and Desert Hills, and statement victories by teams such as Weber, Pine View, North Sevier, Lone Peak, Hurricane, Logan, Kearns, East and Davis.
Personally, there is no place I would have rather been than Jordan. It was a fun game with the two teams going back and forth. It was obvious that the two offenses couldn't be stopped. When Jordan took a 37-34 lead with 1:19 remaining, I thought the Beetdiggers left the Knights too much time to score.
Northridge coach Erik Thompson said that anything can happen in the first week of high school football. On Friday, it pretty much did.
"High school football is really about having fun," he said. "No one cares about your record in 10 years. To have these types of memories is really radical."
Northridge-Jordan is one of the state's underrated rivalries. I was there in 2006 when Jordan's Alex Blaisdell kicked a game-winning field goal to send the Knights home in the first round of the playoffs. That was the last time Jordan had played at home prior to Friday afternoon.
That much was pointed out to Thompson prior to Friday's game by Jordan people. They even pointed to the end zone where Blaisdell's kick sailed through the uprights. And wouldn't you know it, this time it was Northridge that won on a last-second play in the same end zone when Junior Cole threw a 7-yard touchdown pass to Chris Washington with 7.4 seconds remaining.
I don't think I'll forget about that game for a long time. I also think I'll be typing in names such as Cole, Peni Makaiafi, Washington, Blake Smithing and Alex Hart many times during the season.
I caught a little bit of the Logan-Murray game following the three-hour Northridge-Jordan game. Boy, Logan is the real deal and Jeff Manning is the best quarterback in the state. I've been told that he's made unbelievable strides since the end of the 2007 season. He proved it on Friday.
The Grizzlies are the favorites to win the 3A title. They don't have the depth that the 2005 state champion team Logan had. But I bet Logan's ones can play with any team in the state.
I saw that Judge's assistant backup free safety coach for its sophomore team took a shot at me somewhere in cyberspace during the week for picking Logan to win 3A. Hey, you guys can do your talking with results, and I'm not talking about in August or September.
Here are some notes about Friday's games, courtesy of my friend and high school football historian George Felt. I'm going to twist his arm this week and see about publishing his weekly notes on our Web site. Die-hard football fans will enjoy them.
• Woods Cross set a school record for points scored in a 65-14 win over Ben Lomond. The Wildcats' previous high was 48.
• For the second straight year, Park City set a school record in points scored. The Miners defeated Canyon View 69-7. Last year, Park City scored a then-school record 64 points against Uintah.
• Skyline has a 10-2 record against Bingham.
• West Jordan's 2-0 win was the first 2-0 game (not by forfeit) since 2003 (Carbon 2, Wasatch 0).
• Weber's 29-0 win over Box Elder marked the first time the Warriors shut out an opponent since 2003.
• Box Elder had scored in 96 consecutive games. It was the state's second longest scoring streak and went back to Oct. 6, 1999.
• Timpview, with 24 straight victories, is now tied for second on the all-time win-streak list with three others (East, Millard and Pleasant Grove).
AA TOP 10
8. Pine View
9. Mountain Crest
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Dylan Chynoweth, Park City
How's this for a yards-per-carry average? Chynoweth had nine carries for 248 yards and scored three touchdowns in the Miners' 69-7 win over Canyon View. It looks like Park City's fullback position is in great hands for the third straight year.
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Colby Brklacich, Hillcrest
He was a terror on defense, recording four sacks in Hillcrest's 31-20 win over Olympus on Friday night.
COACH OF THE WEEK
Roger DuPaix, Skyline
Sometimes, you just have to tip your hat. DuPaix didn't win a bunch of state titles by accident, and you have to give it up to him for leading Skyline to a 24-17 win over Bingham. I don't care if Bingham was missing players. The Eagles got it done on the field.
STAT OF THE WEEK
By my count, there were 780 yards of offense in the entertaining Northridge-Jordan clash. It almost seemed like Arena Football, only it was 1,000 times better than Arena Football.
It's going to be a long week waiting for next week's slate of games. The schedule is obviously headlined by Bingham-Alta, which now takes on greater importance for the Miners after they lost to Skyline. East-Skyline is suddenly a much bigger game after the two teams picked up victories on Friday night. The same can be said for Woods Cross-Syracuse. Cottonwood-Layton has the potential to be a classic, while I'm also looking forward to Park City-Logan, Highland-American Fork and Viewmont-Lone Peak. Don't forget about today's Mountain Crest-Highland game at Utah State. It will be a slugfest.