NUMBER 10: KENI LATU – LEHI
Latu is an up-and-coming phenom at Lehi. He has giant shoes to fill as the captain of the Pioneer secondary. He has an astronomically high ceiling and has the potential to be number one at one point in his high school career. Look out for Lehi to reload this season and not miss a beat in the playoffs.
NUMBER 9: JACE SWEETEN – CRIMSON CLIFFS
Jace Sweeten seemed to have come out of nowhere last season. He was one of the Mustang’s most valuable assets and was a big reason they appeared in the state championship game. Sweeten, and many of his star teammates are rolling it back next season and should be favorites to win it all. Sweeten makes big plays all over the field and has excellent instincts on a football field. He ended last season with five picks and will most likely beat that number in the 2023 season.
NUMBER 8: KINGSTON MICKENS – VIEWMONT
Mickens is riding the hype train at the moment, and it is wholly deserved. He is finally getting the attention he deserves. He is a freak athlete and is beginning to see some offers come in from some colleges. My guess is he will have many more by the time he is concluded his time at Viewmont. The Vikings are losing some key players; this will only make Mickens’ contributions more vital to their success. If Viewmont is to have a shot at their region’s title, he will have to make some game-defining plays, which he is capable of.
NUMBER 7: CHARGER DOTY – BINGHAM
Doty was one of the best watches of 2022. If you want to see Brian Dawkins like hits on the football field, Doty is your man. He packs a punch but can also cover exceptionally well. Doty’s stock is rising but hasn’t even begun to hit what it is capable of. Doty might have the highest ceiling of any defensive backs on this list. Remember the name, Charger Doty. He will be playing D1 ball at a high level very soon.
NUMBER 6: MATTHIAS NAWAHINE – LONE PEAK
Nawahine is underrated in the state, which is rare when you play at Lone Peak. He received the all-state nod last season and was a bright spot on what the Knights would consider a down year. Nawahine will return as perhaps the best player on their defense and must show some leadership on a young team. He is quick and fast and is an extremely hard worker. There is no question he will return to the field in August, improved and refined.
NUMBER 5: TAVIAN EDWARDS – WASATCH
Edwards has some “honey badger” like attributes. Much like Tyrann Mathieu in his LSU days, Edwards has as good a shot of scoring six, as anyone on Wasatch’s offense. And that is not a shot at their offense. Edwards has unreal football instincts and can shut down some serious square footage of a football field. What might be the most impressive aspect of all, is that he is only going to be a junior next season.
NUMBER 4: DREW DEUCHER – PROVO
I’ve mentioned that Provo might have the most talented defensive backfield next season. Deucher being top dog. He might even bet the best or second best defensive back in Utah county, and that is some high praise. I don’t doubt that he will not prove me wrong. With all of that being said, he still seems to not get some of the looks a player of his caliber should. The lack of D1 offers so far seems strange, but my guess it will ramp up midseason. Deucher will captain a defense that will turn some heads in August.
NUMBER 3: DIMI LOVIO – WEST JORDAN
Lovio might be the best athlete west of Salt Lake City. He is quick and will stick to an offender like glue. He also has what is referred to as the “mamba mentality.” He has a killer instinct that is mandatory to be effective at the next level. Lovio is most likely a name many high school football fans have not heard but will soon. The Jaguars are losing a lot of key players, so Lovio will have to take his game to a new level.
NUMBER 2: DAVIS ANDREWS – AMERICAN FORK
Numbers one and two on this list are near interchangeable. They are exceptional athletes that are coveted pieces for prominent D1 colleges. Andrews, in particular, is shifty and football smart. On both sides of the ball, he can make big plays if you give him a sliver of space. American Fork was beyond young last season, but this next season will be the year the Caveman make a run at the title. My guess is that Andrews will make a big play in the playoffs that will single-handedly win them a playoff game. Region four better watch their backs.
NUMBER 1: FALETAU SATUALA – BOUNTIFUL
Satuala stock is bursting at the seams at the moment. He is climbing not just statewide recruit lists but national ones as well, for a good reason. He has impressed and convinced the right people that he is a player that cannot be missed at the next level. He is a freak athlete that has mastered the art of coverage. There is no question he will be Bountiful’s most valuable asset once the pads start popping, and they will need all the help they can get to keep their region crown.