Prep football: Week 1 previews and predictions in Northern Utah
The first week of prep football is upon us with 17 games involving Northern Utah schools.
All games kick off at 7 p.m. this week. Here are previews and predictions for each one Friday night.
2021 prediction record: 123-37
PROVIDENCE HALL at BEN LOMOND
Providence Hall has a new head coach, but most of its team coming back from last year when the 2A North Patriots beat Ben Lomond 31-3 in Ogden.
The Scots may have an edge on the outside with their receivers and corners, but there’s a fair chance of this game being played between the lines and if that’s the case, Ben Lomond’s in for a tough game.
Prediction: Providence Hall
BINGHAM at WEBER
Both teams are regressing to the mean a little bit this year, with Weber having a ton of new starters and Bingham climbing the learning curve introduced by new coaches Eric Jones and Fred Fernandes, who were formerly at Roy.
Keep an eye on Weber freshman receiver Salesi Moa. But the thing about this game is Bingham’s a different breed of cat.
SKYRIDGE at FREMONT
Skyridge is being talked about as the 6A state-title favorite with nearly its whole team back. Fremont has a few returners, but it’s still adjusting to new coaching ways and processes.
The Falcons are loaded and could really put this one away early if Fremont’s not careful.
OGDEN at CANYON VIEW
If this game was in Week 4 or Week 5, it might be an Ogden win. It could still be an Ogden win in Week 1, but injuries have already hit the Tigers hard.
Chet Colvin gives Ogden a chance on the ground, but the Tigers will need to throw it well to keep up against 3A South Canyon View.
Prediction: Canyon View
BONNEVILLE at RIDGELINE
Both teams lost loads of players from 2021. In this game last year, a good Bonneville team lost by 13 to an otherworldly Ridgeline team.
The RiverHawks are back on Earth, but the Lakers are young, figuring things out and playing on the road.
ROY at AMERICAN FORK
This is about as tough as it gets for a Roy season-opener.
Not only is this the Royals’ first game with a mostly new coaching staff and a very new team, but they’re facing an American Fork team that, for comparison, made easy work of last year’s generational Weber squad.
Prediction: American Fork
MORGAN at BEAR RIVER, Game of the Week
In the only game between two area teams this week, Morgan’s essentially the same team as it was last year when it beat Bear River 39-5.
The Bears have new coaches and, they say, new energy that will help them be better this year.
The Trojans are more likely to be in mid-season form, though, and BR’s rebuilding process won’t happen overnight.
WEST at CLEARFIELD
West is, big, talented, experienced. You name it, the Panthers probably have it this year.
This will be a tough one for Clearfield, which is smaller and less experienced.
LAYTON at ALTA
Expect a close game like last year’s 34-27 Alta win. Layton has the experience, talent and size to match up with the Hawks.
The Lancers’ inexperience at quarterback, running back and primary receiver will take a game or two to figure out.
If this game’s played in September or October, Layton probably wins.
NORTHRIDGE at SNOW CANYON
The computers have this game as a Snow Canyon win between 14-28 points. The problem with computer evaluations of Northridge is they’re still taking the 0-10 2020 season into account.
Northridge has enough talent and experience to be in this game and win it. Snow Canyon is deeper, punches above its weight and it’s a home game for them.
Prediction: Snow Canyon
SYRACUSE at RIVERTON
This is the hardest game to predict this week because both teams are fairly good and favored, in some way, in their respective regions.
Syracuse is a little more well-rounded than Riverton, which is favored in the computer projections. Combined with their experience, the Titans stand a good shot at a win on the road.
DAVIS at LEHI
Davis won this game last year at home in overtime.
Lehi returns most of its team from 2021, has credentials as the defending 5A state champion, is at home and has a dynamic offense that can take advantage of the Darts’ inexperienced defense.
FARMINGTON at PLEASANT GROVE
This should be a close game between an experienced Farmington team and a Pleasant Grove team that’s ostensibly better from its 1-10 mark last year.
If Farmington’s run game stalls, it could be in trouble with some questions at receiver, but the Phoenix is solid defensively and should win this one.
BOX ELDER at KEARNS
Kearns has had Box Elder’s number the last three meetings, all of which have been season-opening games.
Box Elder’s supposed to be able to start the season better with how many returning starters it has.
This looks like a low-scoring game on paper, which benefits the Bees, who are this week’s upset pick.
Prediction: Box Elder
HIGHLAND at BOUNTIFUL
Teams know about Bountiful running back Corbin Cottle now after his breakout junior season. Can the Redhawks pass?
Not a lot is known about Highland, which didn’t post stats or an accurate roster last year and didn’t send out any information on this year’s team.
Therefore, the prediction for this game will be decided by the flip of a quarter: heads for Bountiful, tails for Highland. It was tails.
VIEWMONT at LOGAN
Viewmont has won four straight season openers in even years.
Against a young and inexperienced Logan team, the Vikings should make that five straight even-year, season-opening wins.
Look for quarterback/receiver/do-it-all Luke Jacobs to find the end zone in some way, shape or form. This one should be close and low-scoring.
LAYTON CHRISTIAN at SAN JUAN
LCA drives five hours to take on the defending 2A state champion San Juan Broncos, who have a bigger program, more depth, but less experience and talent than the Eagles.
LCA’s running game prowess should keep things close, but the Broncos will be able to weather (no pun intended) the heat a little better with their depth.
Prediction: San Juan
Connect with reporter Patrick Carr via email at email@example.com, Twitter @patrickcarr_ and Instagram @standardexaminersports.