Gooding High School
Conference: 3A Sawtooth Central Idaho Conference
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Head Coach: Cameron Andersen
Years as Head Coach: 8th Season
Previous Experience: 5 (3 as head coach and 2 as assistant)
Record Last Year: 7-5
State Titles: 1984 and 1985
Offensive Returning Starters:
Colton Adkinson, T, 12
Paul Inglin, G, 12
Andrew Carter, C, 12
Gavin Gaspar, T, 11
Mike Needham, RB, 12
Cade Morris, RB, 11
Cayden Loveland, WR, 11
Shawn Pamplona, WR, 12
Defensive Returning Starters:
Ruger Jennings, LB, 12
Sam Funkhouser, SS, 12
Jayden Mullins, LB, 11
Brayden Roe, LB, 11
Shawn Pamplona, CB, 12
Cade Morris, WS, 11
Cayden Loveland, FS, 11
Jake McGinnis, DT, 11
Dain Chance, DT, 12
Returning Players with Honors:
Ruger Jennings, First Team All-Conference/First Team All-State LB
Sam Funkhouser, First Team All-Conference/First Team All-State LB
Jake McGinnis, First Team All-Conference/First Team All-State DT
Andrew Carter, First Team All-Conference OL
Paul Inglin, First Team All-Conference OL
Cayden Loveland, First Team All-Conference WR
Key Players lost from last year:
Tyler Visser, QB, led the state in passing and touchdowns
Bryson Comstock, WR/DB, First Team All-State WR/DB, led state in receiving three years. Playing at EOU.
Photo By: Patty Theurer: #78 Andrew Carter
Incoming impact players:
Shane Jennings, QB, 10
Cayden Loveland, WR, 11
Logan Strom, WR, 12
Anthony Novis, DB, 11
Written by: Sven Alskog
A resurgence of the Kimberly football program created a changing of the guard at the top of the 3A Sawtooth Central Idaho Conference last season. Entering the new year the Bulldogs have seen high roster turnover, meaning the new season should yet again see a great battle at the top with primary challenger Gooding returning a lot of quality talent.
Departed is the passing game combination of Tyler Visser and Bryson Comstock, meaning Head Coach Cameron Andersen will need to find a new signal caller and go-to option on offense.
Sophomore Shane Jennings is an incomer who looks to get a shot behind center, while playmakers highlighted by Mike Needham and Cade Morris in the backfield and Cayden Loveland and Shawn Pamplona in the receiver core come together to form the main options.
One of the things that always seems to be a hallmark of a Senator football team is a strong offensive line.
This year is no exception, with seniors Colton Adkinson, Paul Inglin and Andrew Carter returning, along with junior Gavin Gaspar. Carter and Inglin were both First Team All-Conference selections last season.
"We run a spread, no huddle, up tempo system," said Andersen. "Our strengths will be returning eight starters off of the offense including four offensive linemen. Mike Needham and Cade Morris are dynamic runners and should be solid this year if they can stay healthy. Shane Jennings will shock people with his ability as a sophomore quarterback. Cayden Loveland and Shawn Pamplona are two, 6’3" plus wide receivers who should give him big, dynamic targets."
With what should be a quality offensive line coming back, Andersen hopes to see the offensive better utilize those talents in the trenches.
"We must be better running the ball between the tackles. More physical at the point of the attack."
A youthful defensive unit from last season has a year of experience under its belt, which should help against the high-powered offenses of 3A football.
"We return 10 starters from last year's very young defense," said Andersen. "Ruger [Jennings] and Sam [Funkhouser] are ultra physical linebackers, and Jake McGinnis is a handful in the middle."
He hopes to see improvement against the run to help out a young group of cornerbacks when the opposition does drop back to pass.
On both sides of the ball the total team experience is something that gives the Senators a leg-up on the competition.
That makes it easy for Andersen to point out the number one thing he is excited about.
"Having a heavy senior/junior team. The last two years we have started seven sophomores both years, and this year there is probably only one."
It is a well-balanced schedule for Gooding this year, including matchups with South Fremont and Fruitland, a neutral site affair with Priest River in McCall and contests with 2A Bear Lake, 4A Jerome and 2A Wendell. Add that to the conference slate and the Senators should be prepared for when the calendar turns to late October and November.
The season opener is August 25 at South Fremont, which is one of the statewide highlights of opening weekend this year.