EDITOR’S NOTE • This is one in a series of previews of Utah’s high school football programs. They will run throughout the summer leading up to the 2014 regular season, which begins Aug. 21.
In 15 years as the head coach for Logan High, Mike Favero has certainly seen some big victories — like four state championships, for instance. And he probably remembers some losses, too.
But if Favero is thinking about the way the 2013 campaign ended, he’s sure not letting on and not letting his players dwell upon it either.
“It’s in the past. Not something we’ve talked about — I don’t really use it as motivation,” the coach said.
What happened was this: In a 22-17 opening-round playoff win over Bountiful, starting quarterback Chase Nelson was ejected for a second personal foul. That made him ineligible the next week, and Logan lost to Olympus in the Class 4A quarterfinals.
The defeat was by two points and it was Logan’s only loss of the year.
“It was a tough thing,” Favero said.
In the wake of it all, Logan has returning quarterback experience in Kinkade Wildman — who was forced into the starting role for that one game. But look for junior Hunter Horsley to get a shot at the position, too. Favero said that Horsley will likely end up at running back if Wildman retains the QB spot.
Other returnees on offense include guard Max Parson (Sr., 6 feet, 225 pounds) and Beau Eliason (Sr., 6-0, 225).
Along with Wildman, who was a starting safety for Logan last year, the Grizzlies also have defensive returnees in defensive lineman Kegan Oldham (Sr., 5-11, 290) and cornerback Garrett Wright (Sr., 5-10, 170).
All in all, Logan has eight returning starters — and, maybe, the motivation to replicate most of the 2013 success that only went awry at the end.
“It’s hard to do. Everyone hopes to run the table,” Favero said.
Last year • 11-1 (6-0 in Region 5; lost in 4A quarterfinals)
Key returner • Senior Kinkade Wildman (5-11, 180) is the likely starter at QB after playing one game there last year.
Player to watch • Hunter Horsley (Jr., 5-10, 175) will play RB if Wildman succeeds, but will take over at QB if Wildman falters.
Biggest hole • With Wildman and Horsley, the quarterback position might not really be a hole at all. But deciding on a QB is important: “That’s been a position of strength for us over the years. It’s what make us go,” Favero said.
Need to know • Whoever becomes the signal-caller will have plenty of experienced receivers. Chad Artist (Sr., 6-2, 180), Hartman Rector (Jr., 6-0, 185) and Chandler Lowrey (5-11, 180) all return for the Grizz.