North Gem High School
Conference: Sawtooth Conference East Division
Classification: 1A D2
Head Coach: Mark Dodge
Years as Head Coach: 2
Previous Experience: Assistant at North Gem for 2 years
Record Last Year: 4-5
State Titles: 1988 and 1996
Brent Lish, Mel Hall, Jason Gordon
Who do you have coming back this year?
(Tucker Lish QB/DE SR)
(Dallin Lloyd WR/S JR)
(Mathew Barfuss WR/LB SR)
(Bridger Christensen RB/LB SR)
(Alex Toly DL/OL JR)
(Colby Hatch WR/DE SR)
(Tristin Hatch WR/S SR)
(Kyle Reed OL/DL SR)
(McKay Wadsworth LB/OL JR)
(Karson Lloyd WR/S JR)
Any Returning Players with Honors?
Mathew Barfuss - 2X State Placer in Wrestling, 2nd Team All-Conference DE;
Dallin Lloyd - 1st Team All-Conference WR, 2nd Team All-Conference S;
Alex Toly - 2nd Team All-Conference O-Guard, 2nd Team All-Conference D-Tackle
Any “Key Players” that you lost from last year?
Caston Holbrook - 1A All-Star Game Defensive MVP. Defensive Player of Year Conference. 1st Team All-Conference Safety, 1st Team All-Conference RB, 2nd Team All-Conference Punter; Caleb Williams - 1st Team All-Conference LB, 2nd Team All-Conference RB;
Westyn Thompson - 1st Team All-Conference O-Guard, 2nd Team All-Conference LB
Do you have any new incoming “impact” players?
Tucker Lish QB SR, Dallin Lloyd WR/S JR, Mathew Barfuss WR SR, Alex Toly DL JR, Walker Davids QB SO, Tyler Perkins LB JR, Trenton Thompson LB SO.
As a team, what are your offensive strengths?
We definitely have a QB battle between Tucker Lish and Walker Davids. These two are only going to make our team better. We would like to get the ball out to our athletes in Dallin Lloyd WR and Mathew Barfuss WR and let them make a play like they did at camp this summer. Our running game is just as strong and have 4 people battling for that spot. I think we are reloaded this year. There are many sophomores that could be starting but will get a lot of playing time. Our strength is that we have athletes everywhere and athletes to replace those athletes. We are a deep team in talent this year.
Offensive areas you hope to improve on over last year:
We would like to improve both the running and Passing game. With the competition we have at each position it can only improve.
As a team, what are your defensive strengths?
Alex Toly on the D-line is going to be a monster for us. He was blowing the line up at camp this summer. He is a different Alex Toly than he was a year ago. Tyler Perkins is new to the team this year and is a 6’3” 200lbs LB. We saw great things from him at camp. There are many guys who got a lot of playing time last year that will have an impact for us. We have speed on all 3 levels of the field.
Defensive Areas you hope to improve on over last year:
This year we will be more disciplined on our defensive assignments.
Does your team have a motto/theme for the upcoming season?
Reloaded is our theme. I think it is important that our team and community know that we are just as strong if not better than last year.
What are you most excited about in regards to this year’s team?
I am very excited about our depth at each position. There will be guys who get a lot of playing time that aren’t starters. I think we bring in a new level of toughness this year because of our weight program. We had 28 athletes show up to the weight room one day and I think that is the most ever. On average there were 23 athletes in the weight room.
For the fans, what is the must-see game of the year on your schedule?
We will not overlook any team we play. I think the most important ones are the 1st two. Grace is the first one of the year on August 29th and will be a good one. They are a bigger school with double the amount players. They are in the same county and a lot of people only come to watch that one game. We almost got them last year losing 20-28. I think it is going to be another good game!
Carey is another most-see game because of last year. We almost had them too. I think the guys are starting to believe that we can duke it out with anybody. I think the last game of the season in the playoffs stung. The amount of guys in the weight shows they are thirsty for success.
What is the ‘X-Factor’ to having success this season as a team?
Execution. If we can execute our plays and tackles we will be very successful this year.
If you could change one rule in high school football, what would it be?
I would not change any. Once you change a rule another is changed. We just need to keep the ones we have and play the game of football.
Besides the pay, the fame and the glory, why do you coach high school football?
I love seeing the athletes have success. I get to see them all year round put in so much work. The behind the scenes work. Then they perform so well. A lot of people think they are good just because they are good. Which may be the case in some circumstances. But for the most part it is because they have worked so hard. They met a new friend. (P.A.T.) Pain Agony and Torcher. They do the things people don’t like to do. Then they have success. I love it.
What makes your school the best place to coach for?
I get to see these athletes grow up from when they were little. I have only been here a few years but I can’t wait to see those 1st graders I came here with grow up and have success. I also love the work ethic the athletes at this school have. They go above and beyond what I ask then to. For example James Rindlisbaker an 8th grader for this coming year ran home after weights the other day. Dylan Low a sophomore does 100 push-ups, sit-ups, and free weight squats every day. The things these two and their peers do on a daily basis amazes me because there are few athletes that work as hard as we do outside of our community.