East is vying for its 18th state title in school history, but a win on Friday at Rice-Eccles Stadium would mark the first time the Leopards won 14 games in one season in their 103 years of existence. East has never lost against Springville, with a 4-0 record all-time in the series, while coach Brandon Matich is 1-2 in state championship games.
Springville is 1-3 all-time in the final game, with the lone championship coming in 1985. This is the first appearance for coach Willy Child in the title game. The Red Devils last played in the state championship in 2009.
The Leopards (13-0) are averaging 49.7 points per game while surrendering 16.9 points. They've scored 646 points this season, which is 47 points away from breaking the state record the program set in 2013. Springville (12-0), on the other hand, is averaging 40.3 points and allowing 15.5 points per game.
However, while both programs place an enormous emphasis on the ground game, expect Springville to test the airways. Jantsen Thorpe is a three-year starter under center for the Devils, and if East has shown any weakness, it has been the susceptibility of getting beat in the secondary. That doesn't mean the Devils will abandon a run game fueled by a veteran offensive line and Payton Kelepolo, who has rushed for 1,612 yards and 21 touchdowns.
No matter who is calling the shots in the huddle for East (with starter Ben Ford likely out with a dislocated elbow), the game plan truly won't change. The Leopards, who have rewritten every offensive state rushing record this season, lead the nation in rushing and average 495.5 yards per game on the ground.
Jaylen Warren is 107 yards away from reaching 3,000 yards on the season, and with 36 rushing touchdowns on the year, he's two away from tying the single-season state record in that department.
Prep football historian George Felt contributed to this report.
East vs. Springville
P Class 4A Championship, at Rice-Eccles Stadium
• Friday, 6:30 p.m.