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High school football: Springville Red Devils 2018 preview

Note: Springville finished with a 9-4 overall record in 2017 and was first in Region 8 with a 5-0 record. It lost to Lehi 41-21 in the 5A semifinals.

Springville 2017 Offensive and Defensive Stats

SPRINGVILLE — A walk around Springville, and its football facilities pretty much tells you what kind of program it is. Compared with the gleaming facilities often presented by newer programs, the Red Devils' workout rooms and field are relatively spartan and completely old school.

Those facilities reflect the way the program plays and how Springville coach Willy Child prefers things.

And it works very well, as it were.

The Red Devils have proven one of the state's most consistent programs in recent years. Three years in a row Child has guided his team to Rice-Eccles Stadium and the state semifinal round and once to the championship round, with every expectation set for Springville to be there again this season.

"We want to get there for a fourth time, obviously, but we want to finish out on top, obviously," Child said. "That's the goal of any team, and it's a tough thing to get to, but we've been close enough that we feel it's something we're capable of."

In order to achieve a state championship, or even a deep run in the postseason, Child understands it's a process and part of that process entails not having postseason thoughts prevalent.

"You have to grind it out and just make sure to take care of what's in front of you," Child said. "Hopefully we can get those two home games in the playoffs and then make another good run. That's the goal and we feel confident we can get there again. Kids believe in what we do."

Springville's system is very much old-school with its base formations and approach.

"Kids buy into it and it's been successful for us," Child said. "Fortunately we've had great kids to coach that are coachable and we like what we have coming back this year, even though we lost some key guys."

Springville Red Devils at a glance

Coach: Willy Child enters his seventh year as head coach at Springville. Child has 21 years experience coaching both the football and baseball teams in Springville.

Springville Offensive Snapshot

Offensive coordinator: Doug Bills

2017 offensive production: 26.5 ppg (13th in 5A)

  • 6 returning starters
  • pro-style

Key offensive returning starter

  • Jayden Church (multiple): Church could play at either receiver or at quarterback this season. He's also expected to contribute heavily on the defensive end. "He's a guy who can do a lot of things for us. No matter where he plays or how much, he'll be a big part of what we do," Child said.

Returning starters

Child's comments on his quarterbacks:

"We have two guys competing. Jayden Church is a guy who played some quarterback and who can help us, and then there's Payton Murphy, who we feel is a real good player as well. We'll see how they compete and then make a decision."

Child on his offensive line:

"It's absolutely a big strength for us, getting four starters back. We can run it behind them and it all starts with the offensive line. So having experience there is a real good thing for us."

Child on his receivers:

"Clayton Johnson is a real big target who played a lot for us last year and Trae Willstead is someone we know we can depend on. We like our receivers and feel we can make some big plays down the field."

Springville Defensive Snapshot

Defensive coordinator: Dave Valeti

2017 defensive production: 23.4 ppg (11th in 5A)

  • 6 returning starters
  • 3-4

Key returning defensive starters

  • Simote Iloa and Ryder Peterson (DL): "They'll be starting on both sides of the line for us and they're both very good players. It's not easy playing both sides, but they can do it and they'll be a big part of our success," Child said.

Returning defensive starters

Child on his linebackers:

"Isaiah Webb got some good experience for us last year and the same thing with Rylan Poulson. So we feel we can depend on those guys to help lead the defense and to make plays."

Child on his defensive backfield:

"Jayden Church is a real good player for us and we feel like Austin Mortenson is going to have a good season for us as well."

Coaches preseason Region 8 straw poll: First

Deseret News Region 8 prediction: First

Key Region Game: vs. Skyridge (Oct. 5)

Bottom Line: All signs point to Springville presenting one of 5A's best teams this season and a team well-deserving of favored status in Region 8. Should the Red Devils figure out how to warrant good quarterback play it won't come as a surprise to see them once again finish the season playing at Rice-Eccles Stadium.

2018 Schedule

  • Aug. 17 — at Dixie, 7 p.m.
  • Aug. 24 — SPANISH FORK, 7 p.m.
  • Aug. 31 — at Sky View, 7 p.m.
  • Sept. 7 — LEHI, 7 p.m.
  • Sept. 14 — at Jordan, 7 p.m.
  • Sept. 21 — at Maple Mountain, 7 p.m.
  • Sept. 28 — WASATCH, 7 p.m.
  • Oct. 5 — SKYRIDGE, 7 p.m.
  • Oct. 11 — at Timpanogos, 7 p.m.
  • Oct. 17 — at Provo, 7 p.m.

Felt’s Facts for Springville

All-time record: 433-403-32 (101 years)

Region championships: 25 (1922, 1926, 1929, 1933, 1938, 1954, 1976 co, 1977 co, 1978, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986 co, 1988 co, 1990, 1991 co, 1992, 1993 co, 2001, 2004, 2009, 2010, 2015, 2016, 2017)

Playoff appearances: 47

Current playoff appearance streak: 5 (2013-2017)

All-time playoff record: 30-45

State championships: 1 (1985)

State championship record: 1-4

Most played rivalry: 94 meetings with Payson dating back to 1909. Springville leads 56-31-7. Last met in 2010.

Felt’s Factoid(s): After leading Springville to the state championship, Scott Mitchell, the 1985 MVP, went on to a stellar career at Utah, where he still holds 25 school records. ... Springville holds the record for fewest passing yards allowed in a playoff game: The Red Devils held Sky View to minus-3 passing yards in a first-round game in 1985. … Springville is the only school to have more than one player return an interception 100 yards. Robbie Gueck accomplished the feat in 2000 and Trevor Church did it in 2010.


Last 5

  • 2017 — 9-4 (5-0 in Region 8 - 5A Semifinals)
  • 2016 — 12-1 (6-0 in Region 8 – 4A Runner-up)
  • 2015 — 11-1 (6-0 in Region 8 – 4A Semifinals)
  • 2014 — 6-5 (4-2 in Region 8 – 4A Quarterfinals)
  • 2013 — 7-4 (4-2 in Region 8 – 4A First round)


Springville coaching history

  • 2012-current — Willy Child (47-23)
  • 2008-2011 — Scott Mitchell (30-17)
  • 2007 — Dan Hansen (2-9)
  • 1990-2006 — Doug Bills (89-80)
  • 1981-1989 — Ray Newbury (59-29)
  • 1966-1980 — Mike Jacobsen (72-68-1)
  • 1962-1965 — Karol Bills (2-5-29)
  • 1957-1961 — Benny Kilpack (9-30)
  • 1945-1956 — George Pehrson (46-38-11)
  • 1942-1944 — Art Gilbert (6-12-2)
  • 1937-1941 — Ned McBeth (17-15-5)
  • 1936 — Carl Davis (3-1-2)
  • 1935 — Mr. Rowe (2-2-2)
  • 1932-1934 — Paul Thorne (5-12-1)
  • 1930-1931 — Bob How (6-5-2)
  • 1929 — Unknown (4-2-1)
  • 1928 — C. B. Leddingham (5-1-1)
  • 1908-1927 — Unknown (26-28-1)


Deseret News First Team all-staters the past 10 years

  • 2017 — Bradley Nicol, DE
  • 2017 — Lakei Kolomalu, OG
  • 2017 — Cole Bowers, FB
  • 2016 — Jackson Murphy, FB
  • 2016 — Andrew Slack, OT
  • 2016 — Viliami Kolomalu, OLB
  • 2016 — Junior Mulipola, DT
  • 2016 — Brennan Rymer, CB
  • 2015 — Adam Rodriguez, DL
  • 2013 — Zach Hansen, DL
  • 2011 — Caleb McCray, LB
  • 2010 — Marcus Case RB
  • 2010 — Matt Sumsion TE
  • 2010 — Brody Swanson DL
  • 2009 — Jeff Gueck, DL
  • 2009 — Alema Key, LB

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