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High school football: Parowan Rams 2018 preview

Note: Parowan finished with an 8-3 overall record in 2017 and was second in 1A South with a 2-1 record. It lost to Duchesne 27-14 in the 1A semifinals.

Parowan 2017 Offensive and Defensive Stats

PAROWAN — No team in 1A made a leap in 2017 like the Parowan Rams.

Having won eight games from 2014-2016, the Rams under first-year head coach Carter Miller matched that total last fall, going 8-3. They made the state semifinals, where they fell to the Duchesne Eagles 27-14.

The season included a six-game win streak in the middle, which Miller feels was in large part a product of his players starting to trust that things were going to be different from how they’d been in previous years.

“I just think they started to believe,” Miller said. “We got a couple wins and it just took off from there.”

As Parowan moves into Year 2 with Miller at the helm, the Rams will be facing life without the coach’s son Porter, who led the way in rushing and was tied for the team lead in tackles in 2017, but Carter Miller feels confident success can still happen.

“I think the expectation will stay the same, that we win,” he said. “That’s what we do. From the very beginning, I told them that was our expectation, that’s what we believe we’re going to do, is win, and that’s what we’ll continue to do.”

Last season, Miller feels, is proof that it can happen again.

“It’s a lot easier after having a good year to sell to the kids that it can be done,” he said. “Everyone in town now says we can’t win because Porter graduated or that Parowan’s had a good year here and there but they’ve never been consistent. There’s are already those doubters. I tell (players) we’re not gonna listen. We’re gonna win.”

Parowan Rams at a glance

Coach: After being an assistant at a number of places, Miller certainly acquitted himself well in his first season as a head coach in 2017 with the 8-3 mark.

Parowan offensive snapshot

Offensive coordinator: Carter Miller

2017 offensive production: 37.5 points per game (2nd in 1A)

  • 5 returning starters
  • Veer option offense

Key offensive returning starters:

  • Porter Wood (QB): The Rams will be losing nearly 2,400 rushing yards from last year’s team, which will put more responsibility on the senior to make things happen. He rushed for 483 yards and passed for 422 as a junior.
  • Codey Hanson (RB): Hanson came on strong toward the end of last season and finished the campaign with 220 rushing yards on 25 carries with three touchdowns.

Returning offensive starters

Offensive newcomers to watch

Miller’s comments on Porter Wood returning at quarterback:

“It was a year under his belt of this system and what we do. I think he’ll be even better than he was last year.”

Miller’s comments on Codey Hanson:

“We’re pretty excited about him. Just one of those kids that if I told him to run through a wall, he’d try.”

Miller’s comments on reloading after last year’s success:

“The great programs, the ones that are consistently good, they tell those kids, ‘Next man up. You’ve got to fill in. You’ve got to do it.’”

Miller’s comments on distributing carries:

“I would like to spread the ball around more. The offense is designed let all three (running) backs and the quarterback have all equal carries. This year we’re hoping to be a little more dynamic in that way.”

Keys for offensive success: While Horton and Jones are returning on the offensive line, three good players from 2017 graduated, meaning that unit will have to learn how to become cohesive so the rushing attack can be effective.

Parowan defensive snapshot

Defensive coordinator: Kyle Johnson

2017 defensive production: 10.7 ppg (1st in 1A)

  • 5 returning starters
  • 5-2

Key defensive returning starters

  • Porter Wood (LB): Tied for the team lead in tackles in 2017 with 60.
  • Trey Jense (LB): Led the team in sacks in 2017 with six.

Returning defensive starters

  • Porter Wood (LB)
  • Trey Jense (LB)
  • Daniel Horton (DE)
  • Dixon Jones (DE)
  • Derek Rowley (DB)

Newcomers to watch

Miller’s comments on last year’s defense:

“I think that was the biggest key to our success last year, is our defense was very good. It wasn’t anything that we were doing scheme-wise. It was just the kids flying around to the ball.”

Miller’s comments on overall success:

“It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that the great teams run the ball well and play fantastic defense, and that’s what we kind of build off.”

Keys for defensive success: Miller wants to make sure his team emphasizes gang tackling and not giving up big plays. On the latter point, will having an rather inexperienced secondary become a challenge with the increasing number of teams in 1A that want to throw the ball?

Coaches preseason 1A South straw poll: Fourth

Deseret News 1A South prediction: Fourth

Key Region Game: vs. Milford, Oct. 19

Bottom line: How much will Porter Miller’s departure really impact the Rams? If his father can reload from a personnel standpoint, the culture of success has a solid foundation after last season, and it stands to reason Parowan could have another good year. If new players don’t step up, however, last season may prove to have been a flash in the pan.

2018 Schedule

  • Aug. 17 — ALTAMONT, 7 p.m.
  • Aug. 24 — MILLARD, 7 p.m.
  • Aug. 31 — WHITE PINE, NEV., 7 p.m.
  • Sept. 7 — at Monument Valley, 7 p.m.
  • Sept. 14 — at Layton Christina, 4 p.m.
  • Sept. 21 — RICH, 7 p.m.
  • Sept. 28 — at Wayne, 7 p.m.
  • Oct. 5 — MONTICELLO, 7 p.m.
  • Oct. 12 — at Kanab, 7 p.m.
  • Oct. 19 — MILFORD, 7 p.m.

….

Felt’s Facts for Parowan

All-time record: 164-428-7 (69 years)

Region championships: 1 (1989)

Playoff appearances: 20

Current playoff appearance streak: 1

All-time playoff record: 8-20

State championships: 0

State championship record: 0-1

Most played rivalry: 85 meetings with Milford dating back to 1949. Milford leads 45-37-3.

Felt’s Factoids: Ram David Bettridge returned a missed field goal 99 yards in 1993 to set a record for the longest missed field goal return. … On the other side of the line of scrimmage, Cody Bradley booted a 60-yard field goal in 2008 to become one of just three kickers to make a field goal of at least 60 yards.

...

Last 5

  • 2017 — 8-3 (2-1 in 1A South – 1A Semifinals)
  • 2016 — 3-6 (0-4 in 1A South - Missed playoffs)
  • 2015 — 2-7 (0-4 in 1A South– Missed playoffs)
  • 2014 — 3-7 (1-5 in 2A South - Missed playoffs)
  • 2013 — 6-5 (2-4 in 2A South – 2A Quarterfinals)

...

Parowan coaching history

  • 2017-current — Carter Miller (8-3)
  • 2016 — Anthony Chidester (3-6)
  • 2012-2015 — Brigham Nielsen (12-27)
  • 2007-2011 — Matt Labrum (17-35)
  • 1999-2006 — Rod Murphy (21-50)
  • 1997-1998 — Joe Hays (7-12)
  • 1994-1996 — Danny Lewis (5-22)
  • 1987-1993 — Scott Henderson (24-44)
  • 1986 — Bob August (1-8)
  • 1985 — Unknown (3-6)
  • 1984 — Kevin Singleton (2-6)
  • 1978-1983 — Scott Doubek (7-44)
  • 1977 — Jery Dyer (1-8)
  • 1976 — Tom Baltzer (1-7)
  • 1972-1975 — Dave Jenson (17-23)
  • 1970-1971 — Don Olson (5-13)
  • 1967-1969 – Unknown (7-16-1)
  • 1962-1966 — Lowell Caldwell (10-30)
  • 1959-1961 — Unknown (2-18-1)
  • 1958 — John Wood (0-7)
  • 1956-1957 — Richard Jones (3-11)
  • 1954-1955 — Bruce Decker (4-8-2)
  • 1952-1953 — William "Twist" Jones (1-10-2)
  • 1950-1951 — Unknown (1-10-1)
  • 1949 — Ray Watters (2-4)

.....

Deseret News First Team all-staters the past 10 years

  • 2017 — Ethan Murphy, OL/DL
  • 2017 — Ethan Guymon, RB/DB
  • 2017 — Porter Miller, RB/LB
  • 2017 — Porter Wood, QB/MLB
  • 2013 — Justice Walker, WR/LB
  • 2010 — Zach Wood QB/SS
  • 2009 — Corie Blackham, RB, DB
  • 2008 — Cody Bradley, K
  • 2008 — Nick Wood, QB/DB

To view second team and honorable mention all-staters through the years, check out the Deseret News All-State Archives.