Opposing coaches, defenses and fans better not blink against Kuna. The Kavemen are installing a hurry-up offense that will go so fast that coach Ian Smart said his team can snap the ball every 10 seconds.
“As fast as the refs will let us,” Smart joked. “We’re kind of getting there. The kids got caught off guard a little bit. It’s a complete new thing. Last year, we took time. We were getting down to the end of snap counts and the end of play clocks.”
That tempo will allow the Kavemen to slow the game down when needed with shifts and motions to exploit holes. But if a defense can’t adjust or get fresh players onto the field, it’ll continue to ramp up the speed until it finds the end zone.
Senior quarterback Ben Ruwe returns for his third year as a starter. But he had to beat junior Tyson Fuss in camp with a new system to learn. Ruwe threw for 2,007 yards and 25 TDs in last year’s regular season.
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That experience under center and an offense teams will struggle to prepare for has the Kavemen’s eyes set on their first playoff win since 1998, when they were a 3A program.
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PLAYERS TO WATCH
JAKE JOHNSON, WR/FS
The 6-6 senior poses matchup problems all over the field. The first-team All-Idaho receiver hauled in 45 passes last year for 588 yards and 12 TDs.
KYLER RAY, TE/LB
The 6-3, 205-pound senior shifts from safety to outside linebacker to take advantage of his size and athleticism in space and as an edge rusher.
DAISON WEEDOP, OL
The 6-2, 228-pound senior started all 12 games last season. He’ll push the line to keep up with a new up-tempo pace.
TAYLOR O’NEIL, CB
With the 6-0, 175-pound senior’s agility and toughness to stop the run, Kuna coach Ian Smart thinks he could have another All-Idaho corner on his hands.