QB: Nate Manning, Jr., Century
Stats: 153 of 244 for 2,007 yards, 23 touchdowns and four interceptions; 245 yards rushing and three touchdowns
The lowdown: Manning had a breakout year in his first full season as Century’s starter, tossing at least two passing scores in eight of 10 games. The dual-threat quarterback also took care of the ball, throwing one interception every 61 passes. Manning completed 8.2 yards per attempt and was the first D-back QB to throw for 20 TD passes or more since 2015.
Quotable: “The attitude he brings, that fearlessness, is what he is. He is a leader and he accepted his role. Every quarterback has to be that.” — Century coach Travis Hobson
RB: Landon Demuzio, Sr., Highland
Stats: 166 carries for 1,291 yards and 12 touchdowns; 61 receptions for 692 yards and nine touchdowns
The lowdown: Demuzio was Highland’s most dynamic weapon. The running back averaged 7.8 yards per rush and 11.3 yards per catch. He rushed for 100 yards or more in six of the final seven games for the 5A runner-up Rams. Demuzio finished seventh in program history in career yards (2,001) and eighth in career points (246). Demuzio also notched the 10th-best single-season touchdown outing (21) in school history.
Quotable: “We don’t get as far as we did without Landon. He has speed, patience and he had a transformation, like a butterfly.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani
RB: Payton Campbell, Sr., Marsh Valley
Stats: 150 carries for 1,510 yards and 24 touchdowns; 93 yards receiving and two scores
The lowdown: Campbell was a star in 2018 for Marsh Valley. The senior rushed for 100 yards or more in seven of nine games, including a four-game stretch where rushed for at least 200 yards and three touchdowns. Campbell averaged 10.1 yards per carry and scored a touchdown every six times he touched the ball.
Quotable: “His stats put him in the conversation with the other top running backs statewide, regardless of division. He had breakaway speed, but he relished and looked for contact.” — Marsh Valley coach Doug Armstrong
WR: Hudson Williams, Sr., Century
Stats: 52 receptions for 589 yards and eight touchdowns
The lowdown: Williams was Century’s go-to receiver. He was the lone Diamondback to catch more than 30 passes and led the team in receiving touchdowns. Williams averaged 11.3 yards per catch and finished second on the team in scoring (48 points). Williams had four games this season where he tallied at least seven catches for 80 yards or more and one touchdown.
Quotable: “He is our glue guy on offense. We utilized him in every way. There was nothing he couldn’t do.” — Century coach Travis Hobson
WR: Andrew VanSickle, Sr., Highland
Stats: 71 receptions for 820 yards and nine touchdowns; 81 yards rushing
The lowdown: VanSickle was a reliable pass-catcher for the Rams. The sure-handed receiver led the team in receptions and yards receiving while also being a threat to run with the ball on jet sweeps. He averaged 11.5 yards per catch, the third-best average on the squad. VanSickle’s 71 receptions are the third-most for a Ram in a single season.
Quotable: “He was phenomenal. Any time we were in a bind, he was the go-to guy. There wasn’t a guy that could cover him.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani
TE Drake Hill, Sr., Highland
Stats: 31 receptions for 485 yards and two touchdowns
The lowdown: Hill was a deep threat for the Rams’ offense. He averaged a team-best 15.6 yards per catch and finished third on the team with 31 receptions. The 6-foot-2 senior could make contested catches and had his best game against Coeur d’Alene, when he caught four passes for 103 yards and one touchdown. His 80-yard score in the game was the ninth-longest touchdown catch in program history.
Quotable: “He has tremendous speed. When he catches the short routes, he could go all the way. He made plays.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani
OL: Tanner Drury, Sr., Highland
The lowdown: Drury was a sure-thing at left tackle for the Rams. He was a leader on the line and the Rams’ top asset in their screen game. He had the speed and quickness to clear the way for the Rams’ pass-catchers.
Quotable: “His technique was flawless. He battled each and every down. If he got on a screen, he was a great blocker.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani
OL: Colton Heinz, Sr., Highland
The lowdown: Heinz was a three-year starter for the Rams. He battled injuries in the past but played a full season in 2018 as Highland’s best offensive lineman. The Rams lost four starters from last year’s O-line and Heinz helped stabilize the unit from his center position.
Quotable: “He didn’t have a bad snap. He is good enough to pull like a guard. He had the most pancakes on the team. He was huge for us.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani
OL: Tanner Branson, Sr., Marsh Valley
The lowdown: Branson was the best lineman in 3A District 5. He used his hands well and was a physical blocker. He helped clear the way for running back Payton Campbell’s breakout season.
Quotable: “He battled in the trenches every play to make our team better.” — Marsh Valley coach Doug Armstrong
OL: Anthony Land, Sr., Century
The lowdown: Land was Century’s best offensive lineman. He was a physical force who grew into his own this year protecting quarterback Nate Manning’s blindside.
Quotable: “I’m glad I had Anthony on my side. He understands how to move his body to challenge defenders.” — Century coach Travis Hobson
OL: Nathan Millward, Sr., Pocatello
The lowdown: Millward was the stalwart of the Indians’ offensive line. The senior was a bulldozer and helped create continuity on the team’s offense. Millward was experienced and finished his season by taking the penultimate snap under center in the season finale against Burley.
Quotable: ”He is one of those kids that you wish your entire team was made up of. He’s the leader in the weight room and the field. ... He made Pocatello High School a great place.” — Pocatello coach Dave Spillett
Kicker: Connor Slack, Sr., Century
Stats: 43 of 45 on extra-point attempts; 3 of 6 on field goals
The lowdown: Slack was nearly automatic on extra-point attempts this season for the D-backs. He missed two extra points in the D-backs’ first game of the season and responded by making 41 of his final 42 extra points. His longest field goal of the year was 31 yards.
Quotable: “He matured and found his strike. He was a weapon. He was reliable.” — Century coach Travis Hobson
Punter: Nick McAdam, Sr., Pocatello
Stats: 43 yards per punt
The lowdown: McAdam was deadly on special teams, averaging 43 yards per punt. He flipped field position and had 10 punts inside the 10-yard line, setting up the Indians’ defense in favorable positions.
Quotable: “He has a very strong leg and was very precise when we needed him to switch the field.” — Pocatello coach Dave Spillett
QB: Matthew Klassen, Sr., Aberdeen
Stats: 15 of 33 for 249 yards, four touchdowns and four interceptions; 110 carries for 1,347 yards and 20 TDs
The lowdown: Klassen was a deadly runner this season. He averaged 12.5 yards per carry and had six games of 100 yards or more on the ground, including outings of 232 yards and 328 yards. Klassen also had three games with four rushing TDs or more.
RB: Enoch Ward, Sr., West Side
Stats: 114 carries for 930 yards; 26 receptions for 532 yards; 25 total touchdowns
The lowdown: Ward finished the season with 150 points, breaking the school’s season-single scoring record. Ward’s versatility shined in his record-breaking season as he finished with 1,482 all-purpose yards.
RB: Jackson Yearsley, Sr., Century
Stats: 102 carries for 650 yards and 10 touchdowns
The lowdown: Yearsley finished the season strong, earning the role as top runner in Century’s two-headed backfield. He shined in the Diamondbacks’ zone scheme and was a reliable runner who used his vision to knife through holes.
WR: Drew Gunter, Jr., Century
Stats: 29 receptions for 629 yards and six touchdowns
The lowdown: Gunter was Century’s big-play generator on the outside. He was a deep threat who used his speed and athletic ability to stretch defenses. He opened opportunities for other receivers underneath because defenses had to honor his deep-play ability.
WR: Aaron Marshall, Sr., American Falls
Stats: 13 receptions for 357 yards and three touchdowns; 43 yards rushing and one TD
The lowdown: Marshall was Marsh Valley’s big-play threat on the outside. The team didn’t throw the ball a lot, but Marshall was the No. 1 option when they did.
TE: Titan Fleischmann, Soph., Century
Stats: 20 receptions for 194 yards and three touchdowns
The lowdown: The sophomore tight end was a reliable blocker and passing outlet in Century’s offense this season. Fleischmann missed two games because of an injury but still helped the D-backs transform their offense. When he was on the field, he was a difference-maker.
OL: Conn O’Doherty, Sr., Marsh Valley
The lowdown: O’Doherty was a rock in the middle of the Eagles’ offensive line. The three-year starter observed defenses from his center position and was a feisty competitor who wasn’t afraid to be physical.
OL: Jack Moser, Sr., West Side
The lowdown: Moser was the key piece on West Side’s offensive line. He was a three-year starter who played every position on the O-line during his career. He made the calls all season from his strong-side guard spot.
OL: Mitchell Spence, Sr., Aberdeen
The lowdown: Aberdeen gave Spence a 98 percent blocking grade this season. The Tigers weren’t shy about running behind him as he helped create the base of the team’s run-first offense.
OL: Anthony T. Harrison, Sr., Snake River
The lowdown: Harrison was a solid two-year starter for the Panthers. He took on physical defensive linemen and held his own against anyone in the classification. Snake River coach Jeb Harrison said Anthony did not have a bad snap all season.
OL: Tyson Dory, Jr., Blackfoot
The lowdown: Dory was the Broncos’ best offensive lineman. The junior was a strong tackle who was assigned to protect quarterback Craig Young’s blindside. Dory also switched sides, depending on the play call. Blackfoot coach Stan Buck knew Dory was a reliable piece.
Kicker: Logan Armstrong, Sr., Highland
Stats: 27 of 31 on extra-point attempts; 5 of 8 on field goals
The lowdown: Armstrong helped solidify the Rams’ special teams unit. He had a strong leg that the Rams relied on when they reached the red zone.
Punter: Stockton Brown, Sr., West Side
Stats: 42 yards per punt
The lowdown: Brown was a rugby-style punter. The senior’s kicks were unpredictable, allowing for minimal returns from opponents. Brown rolled out on his punts, allowing his coverage team to get down field and make tackles.
HONORABLE MENTION OFFENSE
QB: Jake Wray, Sr., Shelley
Stats: 141 of 239 for 1,830 yards, 16 touchdowns and four interceptions; five rushing touchdowns
RB: Hulizes Ortiz, Sr., Aberdeen
Stats: 100 carries for 920 yards and 11 touchdowns
RB: Treyton Young, Sr., Snake River
Stats: 144 carries for 836 yards and six touchdowns
WR: Bronx Holbrook, Sr., North Gem
Stats: 32 receptions for 780 yards and 10 touchdowns
WR: Pratt Matthews, Sr., Rockland
Stats: 40 catches for 671 yards and 11 touchdowns
OL: Luka Schneider, Soph., American Falls
OL: Alex Apel, Sr., Century
OL: Blake Williamson, Jr., Highland
OL: Riley Parker, Sr., Preston
OL: Justin Beck, Sr., Bear Lake
OL: Lane Barnes, Sr., Soda Springs
Kicker: Marino Vedova, Sr., West Side
Stats: 43 of 52 on extra-point attempts
Punter: Jayden Bell, Jr., Highland
Stats: 40.6 yards per punt on 18 punts
DL: Kamiah Olsen, Jr., Highland
Stats: 48 tackles, 7 tackles for loss and 5 sacks
The lowdown: Olsen was the top defensive lineman in the area. He led the Rams in tackles for loss (7) and sacks (5) while facing constant double-teams. Olsen was explosive off the line, thanks to his time in the weight room this summer. If Olsen faced one blocker, he often found himself in the backfield.
Quotable: “He was a man. He got it done physically and mentally. He was a weight-room freak. He wants to be great.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani
DL: D’Qua Lang, Jr., Century
Stats: 56 tackles, seven hurries and 5 tackles for loss
The lowdown: Lang was an imposing player on Century’s defense. The 6-foot-5, 250-pounder fought through double-teams all season and made strides each week. He was fourth on the team in tackles (56), second in tackles for loss (5) and third in hurries (seven). Lang had 17 tackles and two hurries in 2017.
Quotable: “He was the one who made things work on the front. He is going to be special down the line.” — Century coach Travis Hobson
DL: Luke Togiai, Soph., Highland
Stats: 76 tackles, 6 tackles for loss and 4 sacks
The lowdown: Togiai made an impact in his first year as a starter. He finished second on the team in tackles (76), tackles for loss (6), and sacks (4). Togiai was a powerful defensive lineman who flashed his potential this season.
Quotable: “He came a long way. He has the pedigree; the name has been made. He lived up to the expectations and is doing this his own way.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani
DL: Tanner Branson, Sr., Marsh Valley
Stats: 65 tackles, 6 tackles for loss and 3 sacks
The lowdown: Branson was a problem for offensive lines. He had the size to take on any blocker and the speed to run down ball carriers. He punished players when he tackled them and used his wrestling background to his advantage.
Quotable: “He was the anchor of our defensive line.” — Marsh Valley coach Doug Armstrong
LB: Dylan Jester, Jr., Highland
Stats: 90 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss and 1 sack
The lowdown: Jester became the leader of the Rams’ linebacker corps, despite not starting until the fifth game of the season. He was a rotational player for the first four games but was too good to keep off the field. Jester finished the season averaging 7.5 tackles per game.
Quotable: “You want to talk about a kid with confidence? He wants to be the best every time. He is really a kid that wanted to become a great football player.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani
LB: Adam Ames, Sr., Century
Stats: 88 tackles, 4 tackles for loss and three bat downs
The lowdown: Ames was Century’s most important piece on defense. The converted safety added 30 pounds in the offseason to handle the wear and tear at linebacker and became a coach on the field. The D-backs needed a linebacker, and Ames was the perfect fit, finishing second on the team in tackles.
Quotable: “Our defense wouldn’t be what it was without him.” — Century coach Travis Hobson
LB: Taylor Kerr, Sr., Highland
Stats: 67 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss and 1 sack
The lowdown: Kerr wasn’t the biggest linebacker in the area, but his lack of size did not limit his impact on the field. The 5-foot 9, 160-pounder was the Rams’ starting outside linebacker who could provide support in the run and the pass games. He finished fourth on the team in tackles (67).
Quotable: “He was more finesse than power, but he always got the job done. He covered well, made plays.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani
DB: Carter Fellows, Sr., Highland
Stats: 50 tackles, five bat-downs and three interceptions
The lowdown: Fellows shadowed the opposing team’s top receiver all season. He had the speed, physicality, and athleticism to match up with any receiver. As his confidence grew each week, his play improved.
Quotable: “He was our guy. He is a kid that got stuff done. You could rely on him.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani
DB: Deshun Harwell, Sr., Century
Stats: 31 tackles and nine bat-downs
The lowdown: Harwell was left on an island at cornerback this season. The senior had the experience and earned the trust of his coaching staff, so they let Harwell work one-on-one every game. Harwell was counted on to blanket the other team’s best receiver, and he delivered.
Quotable: “He embraced the role of being the one-on-one guy better than any corner I’ve seen in a long time. He didn’t back down.” — Century coach Travis Hobson
DB: Jayden Bell, Jr., Highland
Stats: 74 tackles, 10 bat-downs and two interceptions
The lowdown: Bell was the best defensive back in the area. He was the complete package for the Rams, using his 6-foot-3 frame to successfully defend the run and the pass. When Bell wasn’t playing safety, he locked down opposing team’s receivers in the slot, leading to a team-high 10 bat-downs. He also finished third on the team in tackles (74).
Quotable: “He is one of the most physical safeties we’ve had in a long time. He got after kids. He liked that role.” — Highland coach Gino Mariani
DB: Cole McKinlay, Sr., Century
Stats: 39 tackles, three bat-downs and two interceptions
The lowdown: McKinlay patrolled from the back of Century’s defense at his safety position. The senior brought physicality and speed to the team’s backfield, plus range that allowed him to make any play on the field. McKinlay also understood how to attack offenses as a former quarterback.
Quotable: “He did a great job. I never had to worry about someone throwing over the top of us.” — Century coach Travis Hobson
DL: Joey Newman, Sr., Century
Stats: 50 tackles, 6 tackles for loss and 5 sacks
The lowdown: Newman was a speedy defensive end for Century. He was the team’s best pass rusher and a force in the run game. His top trait was his jump off the line of scrimmage, which helped him lead the team with 14 hurries.
DL: Jack Moser, Sr., West Side
Stats: 57 tackles, 6 sacks and 5 tackles for loss
The lowdown: Moser was second on the team in tackles (57), sacks (6) and tackles for loss (5). The senior constantly battled double-teams at his defensive tackle position and used his quickness to make plays all over the field.
DL: Spencer Watson, Sr., Aberdeen
Stats: 43 tackles, 14 tackles for loss and 2 sacks
The lowdown: Watson was a force on the Tigers’ defensive line. He controlled the middle of the field, totaling 14 tackles for loss. The 6-foot-7, 300-pounder’s presence forced teams to run offense away from him.
DL: Jack Hall, Sr., Highland
Stats: 56 tackles, 4.5 tackles for loss and 3.5 sacks
The lowdown: Hall finished third on the team in sacks (3.5), relying on his speed to beat offensive linemen around the edge. He began taking reps at wide receiver this summer before moving to the D-line, where he shined.
LB: Brian Jackson, Sr., Pocatello
The lowdown: Jackson was at the center of Pocatello’s defense. The 220-pounder was a force in defending the run, using his wrestling skills to become a sure-tackler. Pocatello coach Dave Spillett described Jackson as an “old-school football player.”
LB: Kory Killpack, Sr., Shelley
The lowdown: Killpack was the hammer in the middle of Shelley’s defense. Killpack was a “weight-room warrior” this summer and it helped him produce on the field. Former Shelley coach Jake Monahan, who stepped down after the 2018 season, said Killpack was the hardest worker on the team.
LB: Payton Campbell, Sr., Marsh Valley
Stats: 61 tackles and one interception
The lowdown: Campbell was the leader of Marsh Valley’s defense. He always found himself near the play and delivered bone-crunching hits to ball carriers. He helped form a formidable 3A defense with his speed and motor.
DB: Dillon Robinson, Sr., West Side
Stats: 27 tackles, nine interceptions and five bat-downs
The lowdown: Robinson was a playmaker at safety for West Side. He set a single-season school record with nine interceptions and returned one INT for a touchdown. He had 15 interceptions in the last two years.
DB: Carter Scott, Sr., Century
Stats: 31.5 tackles, five bat-downs and two interceptions
The lowdown: Scott was undersized at 5-foot-9, 150 pounds but still did more than hold his own on the outside. He finished third on the team in bat-downs (two), thanks to his ability to make plays on the ball in the air.
DB: Jadon Whitworth, Sr., Highland
Stats: 61 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss and one bat-down
The lowdown: Whitworth was the commander of the Rams’ secondary. He was the most experienced defensive back, setting the team’s coverages and calls. Highland coach Gino Mariani said he was “the brains behind the defense on the field.”
DB: Reece, Robinson, Sr., Blackfoot
Stats: 32 tackles, four bat-downs and three interceptions
The lowdown: Robinson was the Broncos’ best defensive back. He tracked the opposing team’s top receiver every game, using his speed to limit big plays. Robinson, a corner and safety, was reliable in run support, too.
HONORABLE MENTION DEFENSE
DL: Brigham Cook, Sr., West Side
Stats: 48 tackles, 10 sacks, 7 tackles for loss, six fumble recoveries and five blocked kicks
DL: Ty Belnap, Jr., Snake River
DL: Trei Hough, Sr., Pocatello
DL: Spencer Watson, Sr., Aberdeen
Stats: 43 tackles and 14 tackles for loss
LB: Jose Aguayo, Sr., Blackfoot
Stats: 59 tackles and 2 sacks
LB: Jake Moser, Sr., West Side
Stats: 55 tackles, 3 tackles for loss and 2 sacks
LB: Dillon Samana, Jr., Century
Stats: 92 tackles, 6 tackles for loss and three forced fumbles
DB: Logan Armstrong, Sr., Highland
Stats: 30 tackles, four bat-downs and 2 tackles for loss
DB: James Seelos, Sr., Soda Springs
Stats: 32 tackles, nine bat-downs and one interception
DB: Colton Mechan, Sr., Firth
Stats: 26 tackles and two interceptions
DB: Scott Dunn, Jr., Preston
Stats: 28 tackles, seven bat-downs and two interceptions