Only time will tell how the upcoming football season will play out for the Broncos of San Juan High School.
Many 2A football fans, and some coaches, may feel San Juan will not be the dominant team they have been in the past.
In most cases, they would probably right. After all, the Broncos lost more than 6,000 yards of offense to graduation.
On the other hand, anyone who is familiar with the program realizes that San Juan rarely has rebuilding years. Instead, they tend to reload as unknown players see their hard work and dedication pay off now that it’s their turn to take the field and become new household names around Blanding and throughout the 2A ranks.
Taking over the reins on the offense will be senior quarterback Terrance Tate, who Coach Monty Lee has called “a smart kid and a hard worker”.
The Broncos will also have a strong stable of running backs as senior Jens Grover, junior Max Morley and sophomore Bronz Eldredge solidify the backfield with Tate.
The Bronco backs will benefit playing behind a strong offensive line which returns three players with starting experience.
“We have big strong kids up front,” Lee said.
Three of those big strong kids are Chase Richmond, who will resume his spot at center, Ben Brewer and Brayden Giddings, who will play guard and tackle respectively.
Defensively the Broncos return only two starters, Giddings and Eldredge, who helped anchor a strong defensive line.
Already garnering attention from college programs, Eldredge looks to improve on his impressive freshman campaign (83 tackles 17 for a loss and 5.5 sacks) when he moves from defensive tackle to a more natural fit at middle linebacker.
Although lack of experience suggests otherwise, the coaches and players alike feel the 2013 defense will be right on par with the stingy San Juan defenses of the past few years.
In spite of all the changes and challenges the Broncos face in their 2013 season, Lee remains optimistic, adding, “These kids are going to surprise a lot of people.”
The Broncos open their season Friday, August 23 against the Warriors of Snow Canyon High School. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.