On paper, this Friday’s football opener between the Canyon View (Utah) and Virgin Valley High could be rated as a tossup. The teams are young and inexperienced.

Only three starters return for first year head coach Skyler Miller’s young Falcon squad. The Cedar City squad had a 4-7 record in 2016 but advanced to the 3A playoffs in Utah. The Falcons returnees are in the line and linebacker corp. Miller is counting Senior Wyatt Barton will be counted on both sides of the line along with Taylor Haley at the middle linebacker spot.

Their offense was supposed to be led by quarterback Stockton Rigby but his return from foot surgery his hit and miss. The pundits from Southern Utah may be right when they picked the Falcons for last in Utah Region 9 3A football. The Falcons were blown out at home Friday night August 18 by 2A Beaver 46-0. The Falcons could not manage any type of attack in the loss.

This bodes well for the home town Dawgs and their “three yards and a cloud of dust” offense led by all-state running back Jayden Perkins. The young and inexperienced Bulldogs season depends on keeping Perkins injury free. The Dawgs line will have to open holes for Perkins and 2-back Cresent Crandall to slide through to keep the offense moving.

Senior quarterback Cade Anderson will get tested early but his overall athleticism should serve him well in his debut as a starter. The game could be a field day for the Dawgs running game.

Scheduling the inexperienced Falcons for the opening game, could be a blessing for coach Yori Ludvigson’s young squad. The Dawgs defense should do well against the run but their defensive backs will be tested early. Late news from the hill may cause some problems for the Dawgs as a late shakeup has offensive coordinator and assistant coach Mike Snow plus assistant Nick Montoya gone from the program.

Despite these late changes, the Bulldogs running game will be too tough for the Falcons to handle. Dawgs should win in a blowout by 21 points.