BY SHAIN GILLET
Clipper Sports Editor
BOUNTIFUL – The Viewmont Vikings football team had an up-and-down pair of seasons in Region 2, where they went from region champions to one-and-done in the 2012 playoffs.
Now back in Region 1, the team is already looking forward to hitting the field.
“The players have been working very hard this offseason,” said Brad Lloyd, who is entering his fifth season as Vikings coach. “The (Region 1) coaches have been very welcoming and are excited to have us back.”
As the Vikings prepare to be welcomed back, Lloyd and his coaching staff have put together a plan to anchor down the trenches on both offense and defense. One of the biggest players the Vikings carry is Will Daines, a 6-foot, 5-inch, 285-pound lineman that has been “a hard worker” during the offseason. Daines will see the field as part of the offensive and defensive lines.
Others are Dallin Tracy, Nick Odysseus, Bill Wakley and Hayden Bryson. All except Wakley are seniors this season, and have pushed the rest of the team during the offseason.
“Those guys will see some time on the offensive and defensive front,” said Lloyd. “They’re going to be a big part of what we want to accomplish this season.”
The plan to improve the offensive line play, said Lloyd, is all part of a bigger plan to improve on spread offense. Injuries at quarterback forced the Vikings to play a freshman at one point, and led to a “quarterback by committee” approach as the season continued.
“If we’re able to improve on our offensive line, our quarterback can stay healthy,” he said. “That’s why we’ve stressed on improving our play in the trenches.”
Familiarity is what’s driving Lloyd to improve on the defensive line. Lloyd said most of the coaches in Region 1 have philosophies that are “well-established,” but admitted that going through the region will be as tough as ever.
“Every week is a dog fight,” he said. “It’s nice to come back to Region 1, but we’re well aware of how tough it’s going to be once we start playing those familiar teams.”
Another common theme for Viewmont is experience. As many as nine seniors and seven juniors saw significant playing time in 2012, giving the team an extra advantage.
Aaron Dalton is one of those players. Now a senior, Dalton was a favorite target at tight end and also kicked extra points and field goals.
“He started at tight end for the last three years and is a solid player,” said Lloyd. “He’s on board with the rest of the team as far as pushing the team to do great things.”
Other than the handful of leaders, Lloyd was hesitant to point out other players. His team went to leadership council retreats, where they decided to play with passion, commitment and desire.
“We want to compete, and we want to be fundamentally sound,” he said. “We’ve continued to emphasize playing as a team. We’re really looking forward to getting the season started.”
The Vikings finished 2-9 in 2012, and was 2-3 in Region 2. They lost to Syracuse in the opening round of the playoffs.
Vikings 2013 schedule
8-30 @ Bountiful
9-6 @ Woods Cross
9-20 @ Weber
9-27 @ Davis
10-10 @ Layton