A new head coach will lead the Carbon Dinos into a new decade when the team takes the field for the first time this season on Friday, Aug. 14 against American Leadership Academy.
Phil Howa was announced as the program’s new head coach this past March, marking the fourth coach since 2010. Howa, who graduated from Carbon High School, has been the head coach at Helper Middle School for the past 28 years.
“His attitude, excitement, vision and experience all played into our decision,” said Carbon High School Principal Chris Winfree. “His vision of what he believes this program can become is extremely exciting.”
Howa will take over a relatively inexperienced team looking to replace key players at key positions. Returning a combined five starters from last year’s team, new schemes on both sides of the ball may pay dividends for a squad that will feature a higher number of players in past years.
Offensively Carbon will running the Triple Option, a system Howa has utilized for decades at Helper. It’s also a system that could highlight the unit’s three returning starters: Cooper Schade, Derrick Robinson and Josh Andresen.
“I’ve seen it successful at multiple levels. It honestly gives us four options when you throw the football,” said Howa. “Right now the kids are trying to force things and you don’t have to this with the option. Usually things present itself and they’ll learn that.”
The main question for Carbon’s offense is who will be under center for the opener against ALA. Last season the team used a two quarterback system, but both Tyler Wright and Jaylon Dennis have graduated.
Throughout the summer workouts three players have emerged as possible suitors for the quarterback role. Senior Mckaden Whiteleather, junior Keaton Rich and junior Hayden Tallerico may all earn time at the position.
“I have three kids right now that I know can guide the team,” said Howa. “All three are great athletes and great running quarterbacks. We put the triple option in Monday just to see how they can handle it and I was very impressed.”
Defensively Carbon may present several different looks for the opposition around a base 3-5 defense. Under the instruction of coordinator Taylor Brower, Carbon will return just two starters on the unit, but will have the depth to perhaps sustain last year’s signs of success.
In two non-region games the Dinos held both Judge Memorial and Duchesne to just one touchdown throughout the game. Carbon also blanked South Sevier for the final two quarters in the season finale on the road.
“If you know the base of a 3-5 then you go do everything,” said Howa when asked about the defense. “Since we’ve added a 3-4, 4-4, 5-3 and even a six man front. The kids have adjusted really well and understand that they can do this. So kudos to coach Brower.”
The Dinos will once again be apart of the 3A Classification entering the 2020 season. Carbon will share a competitive Region 12 with Emery, Richfield, Grand, San Juan and South Sevier.
While there is always emphasis placed on the region portion schedule, the non-region will again play an important factor into the playoff picture as the RPI system will again be used. The non-region slate will consist of ALA, Cottonwood, Duchesne, Judge Memorial and Union.
The first live contact of the season will come on Friday Aug. 7 as the team participates in the annual Blue and White Scrimmage.
“My main objective for the Blue and White game is for these kids to prove to themselves that we can play on both sides of the ball,” Howa said in regards to the season’s first showing. “I would also like to get the younger kids on the field as well because they are putting in a lot of time and work.”
All Carbon High School football games will air live on KRPX 95.3 The Peak and will also be available at castlecountryradio.com, or with the KRPX Radio App.
Below is the complete schedule for the 2020 season: