Herriman came into the game with the reputation of having the top offensive and defensive lines in the state of Utah. Bingham did what they have been doing for years, they killed the hype. Bingham's defense was too tough and their offense was too well executed. The majority of Bingham's standouts are 2016 and 2017 prospects. The Bingham coaching staff was gleaming about their three starting sophomores on their defensive line. "It's baptism by fire," the Bingham staff told me. The Miners are the top team in Utah this year, but in a few years, they could be one of the top teams in the country.
The Best From Thursday
Kade Cloward: The four-year Letterman for Bingham has picked up where he left off last year. Cloward was first team All-State as a junior, and looks like he is on his way to a repeat performance. Against Herriman, Cloward had two interceptions and also recovered a fumble. His turnovers were a huge reason why Bingham cruised to victory.
Dominieke Jones: Jones had a fantastic pick-6 that changed the momentum in the game after it was 7-7 at half time. Jones was a big reason why Herriman wasn't able to establish a passing game (6 of 18 in the game for 76 yards). He also had a few big hits in run support and is proving to be one of the top cornerbacks in Utah. If Jones ran a better 40 at a few camps, he'd have a handful of offers by now.
Daniel Langi: Langi is the heart and soul of Bingham's defense and he played a good game on Thursday. Langi recorded 10 tackles and also recovered a fumble that he nearly took back for a touchdown. He made some hard hits and never allowed Herriman to find a rhythm on offense.
Chayden Johnston: Johnston channeled his inner-Louie Sakoda on Thursday night. Johnston nailed a 48 yarder that would have been good from 55+, boomed seven punts for an average of 45 yards, and kicked 4/5 of his kickoffs through the endzone. Johnston's leg is one of the strongest I have ever seen at the high school level and validated his ranking amongst the nation's best.
2016 and 2017 Standouts
Jay Tufele: The 6-3 275 pound sophomore was a force in the trenches. Tufele lined up all over the defensive line and looked good at tackle, nose, or end. He recorded 5 tackles, but his ability to eat up space and take on two blocks was impressive. He lined up against Andre James a handful of times and held his own against the four-star tackle. Coach Peck said Tufele "could be one of my best ever," and when he think about some of the linemen that have been at Bingham, that is high praise.
Langi Tuifua: Tuifua's explosiveness is impressive. He fires off the line of scrimmage like his hair is on fire, putting a lot pressure on the offensive tackle. Tuifua was in the backfield for the majority of the night, causing a lot of rushed passes by the Herriman QB.
Simian Matagi: The 2016 outside linebacker is still growing into his body, but his instincts are impressive to the point where his strength is minimized. Matagi blew by the Herriman blockers on numerous occasions, finishing the night with a sack and a few tackles for losses. When Matagi adds on 20 pounds of muscle, he will be one of the top linebackers in Utah.
Parker Workman: Workman is your classic Bingham linebacker. He is tough, smart, and hard hitting. The blue-collar junior had a few violent hits and finished with six tackles and a sack. It wouldn't be surprising to see Workman end up on the all-state team.
Herriman's Top Performers
Dylan Bennett: The Herriman defensive end showed flashes throughout the night. Bennett finished with six tackles, a sack, and a few TFLs. Bennett has a chance to be a good player at the next level.
Kalisi Moli: Bingham ran for less than 4 yards a carry, and Moli had a big part in that. His motor constantly was running at full throttle, and Moli had some big plays, including a 19 yard sack.