Here’s a preseason look at the Top 10 teams in Class 2A Idaho high school football.
CLASS 2A FOOTBALL TOP 10
Aug. 25, 2020
1. WEST SIDE
Back on top once again, the defending state champions are the consensus favorites to repeat in 2A. RB Cage Brokens, the District 5 offensive MVP, shows good instincts in the Wing-T offense. And all-state LB Taze Stegelmeier, the state’s leading tackler (180 tackles) in 2019, is back.
Last season, this young group overachieved and made it to the 2A semifinals. Now, high expectations exist – and the 2002 state champions are poised to make a run. Backfield punch of steamrolling QB Henry Clark and shifty RB Zane Helm gives juice to this Wing-T attack.
3. NORTH FREMONT
Much like West Side, these 2019 state semifinalists return the bulk of their skill-position threats. They are full of explosive athletes everywhere – QB Luke Hill (Nuclear offensive MVP), WR Jordan Lenz (2A state basketball MVP) and high-ceiling RB Deshon Wheeler – in the Wing-T offense.
One thing coach Jeff Evans isn’t afraid of is change – and he is going to the one-read spread offense (think Cam Newton at Auburn) this season. And WR-turned-QB Miles Lefebvre will be the one running it in place of projected starter Jared Lindsley (out with head injury).
Coaches are high on the four-time state champions, and the biggest reason is a quarterback who, pound for pound, might be the toughest in the state – 5-foot-2 sophomore Gage Vasquez. With his shake-and-bake, he quickly loses defenders. RB Sam Park will also get heavy run.
6. ST. MARIES
The Tigers might be behind the 8-ball a bit, having their first four games canceled because of COVID-19 concerns. But when they return, they will feature fast-running QB Eli Gibson to carry the offense. He was the North Idaho 3A-1A athlete of the year. St. Maries won 2A title in 2016.
After a string of four consecutive seasons of at least making the state quarterfinals, the Tigers have suffered first-round exits in 2018 and 2019. But ultra-quick QB Justus Bright, a bevy of running backs, led by Carlos Serna, and an athletic offensive line give them a shot to restart deeper runs.
It’s never easy to replace a coaching legend – and Josh Stewart did last year in place of Kelly Kidd (won four state titles). And the Hornets are going away from the Wing-T to the spread formation with three Matthews’ boys – brothers Gabe (QB) and Derek (RB), and cousin Brogan (RB).
9. BEAR LAKE
Just like last season, the Bears are expected to be a playoff team. And they feature arguably 2A’s best deep-ball passer in QB Owen Teuscher (nearly 2,200 yards, 22 TDs), the District 5 MVP. Question is, who will be on the receiving end of most of them? Somebody has to emerge quickly.
10. NEW PLYMOUTH
It is often tough to forecast the best teams from the Boise valley, but the Pilgrims did go to the 2A quarterfinals last season. And while their pass-happy offense is without a proven quarterback, they do have an experienced offensive line, led by sophomore Hunter Williams.