Monday, Aug. 23, 2010 | 2:05 a.m.
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Las Vegas Sun reporters Case Keefer and Ray Brewer discuss the upcoming high school football season. They will let you know whether or not anyone can dethrone defending state champion Bishop Gorman, release their state title sleepers teams and give a quick breakdown of the area's 30-plus schools.
With talented players at several positions, the Silverado High football team is looking to put the misfortunes of the past two seasons behind them.
The Skyhawks won their initial five games last year and appeared to be a lock to qualify for the playoffs.
But it stumbled down the stretch in losing four of its last five games to miss the postseason for the second straight year. Three of the defeats were by a combined 16 points, and in all three games, the Skyhawks were haunted by turnovers and other mistakes.
“The way we lost games the last couple of years was tough to take,” Silverado coach Andy Ostolaza said. “We have to get away from losing close games.”
Part of the problem was offensively, where the Skyhawks committed too many turnovers. “Over the last two years, our stat guy figured that in league games we lost 36 turnovers,” Ostolaza said.
In an attempt to upgrade the offense, Ostolaza brought in former UNLV and NFL great Randall Cunnigham to be the team’s offensive coordinator. With Cunnigham calling the plays, the Silverado attack is expected to be more balanced and include plenty of passing plays.
Junior quarterback Savon Moniz, a transfer from Liberty who hasn’t thrown a varsity-level pass, has shown promise in the new system, Ostolaza said. At tailback, Izaiah Thurman, who played varsity last year as a sophomore at Centennial, could be one of area’s top college recruits for the class of 2012.
“With a legitimate threat at quarterback, people aren’t going to be able to load up in the box against us,” the coach said.
Silverado will again be solid on the offensive line with the Noone brothers leading the way. Senior Eric (6-foot-2, 308-pounds) is a member of the all-Sun preseason team, and Chris (6-foot-2, 275-pounds) started last year as a freshman.
Senior guard Seth Bohman (6-foot-2, 280-pounds), junior Brandon Card (6-foot-2, 280-pounds), Anthony Landi (5-foot-10, 270-pounds) and Benny Harris (6-foot-1, 270-pounds) combine to form one of the state’s biggest lines.
Defensively, cornerback Ladale Jackson is one of the best in state and part of the Sun’s preseason team. The 5-foot-11, 168-pound Jackson, who won a state track title in the 400 meters with a time of 49.29 seconds, has multiple football scholarship offers, including one from Utah.