Big game matchups both across the state and outside the state highlight this week's Phenoms…
Monarch looks more than capable of defending last year's 4A title with numerous, key players returning. Ethan Marks, the primary ball carrier in the MOHI run offense put up nearly 2,000 yards during his junior campaign and looks capable of improving on those numbers. Beyond Marks, Monarch returns runners Logan Soole and Braden Pape. Adding spark to the offense is athletic transfer Jay MacIntyre, son of Colorado Head Coach Mike MacIntyre. MacIntyre's speed and feel for the game should add a new dimension to the Coyote offense.
Defensively Monarch returns All-State caliber players at each level. On the line, defensive tackle Cody Power is one of Colorado's best, while linebacker Pete Mitchell is a disruptive force. The defensive backfield returns intact with Soole, Kyle Billingsley, Jaylen Alexander and Bruce Oliver all back for a defense that allowed just over ten points a game.
Broomfield has limited returning experience from last year's 8-3 team but the Eagles always have talent and toughness. New starting QB Alec McLain has senior tight end Michael Wristen and junior receiver Dante Panicucci to throw to. At 6-4, both players should be easy to find in the pass game. Up front MichaelHorner anchors the offensive line and Blake Whitsell holds the fort on the defensive line.
The Standley Lake Gators return a core of key players that put them in a position to compete in the Mountain 6 as well as make noise in 4A. 230 pound running back Jordan Downing moved the chains for 800 yards and ten scores as a junior. Last season the Gators were stingy on D allowing just over two TDs a game. Junior linebacker Tyler Davis posted over 100 tackles last season and senior defensive end Trey Jarvis is one of 4A's most explosive linemen. If junior QB Jacob Naranjo shows improvement the Gators could be trouble.
George Washington, 3-7 last season, has to find offense to replace the 1,300 plus rush yard accumulated by Garry Hill.
New Golden Head Coach Jason Neely has a tremendous amount of work to turn things around from a 1-9 campaign last season. 6-2 200 pound Junior linebacker Cole Greff is a player to watch with 11 tackles for loss and a pick last season.
Montbello may have the athletes to surprise teams this season. Senior QB A.J. Thompson passed for over 1,700 yards last season and returns to work with All-State receiver Marquille Jones and fellow senior receiver Jante Gadsen. On defense, seniors Marquell Ruiz and Gerardo Barraza were tackling machines.