North Fremont High School
Conference: 2A Nuclear Conference
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Head Coach: Bryan Miller
Years as Head Coach: 1st Season
Record Last Year: 11-13
Stockton Dye, point guard, 12th
Brad Fabanich, Post, 12th
Seth Toenjes, Guard, 12th
Garrett Hawkes, Guard, 10th
Key Players lost from last year:
Josh Hess, post
Tanner Oberhansley, point guard
Michael Mower, guard
Caleb Hess, guard
Max Hess, post
Luke Nedrow, guard
Written by: Matt Harris (@IdahoSportsMatt)
It’s a new era of high school basketball at North Fremont High School… with a familiar face.
Bryan Miller takes the reigns of the Huskies boys basketball program following the departure of Todd Jensen, who took a job at Rimrock High School in Bruneau. Miller hopes to lean on his experience of 15 years as an assistant coach and the familiarity with the team to help navigate his rookie season as head coach.
“I feel like I won the lottery!,” he exclaimed. “We have great young men that share my love for the game and are willing to work hard to improve and be successful. What more could a coach ask for?”
Returning to the Huskies this season are senior guards Stockton Dye and Seth Toenjes, along with senior post Brad Fabanich and sophomore guard Garrett Hawkes. They will be joined by a host of incoming impact players whom Miller expects to play key roles throughout the season, including seniors Conner Reynolds, Jose Romero and Shaun Bell. Joining them are sophomores Bridger Lenz, Chris Hansen, Blake Oberhansley, and Peyton Litton.
Missing from that group is senior Gus Henry, who is out for the season with a knee injury sustained during football.
“Every year, for now the fifth season in a row, we have started the season with a player unable to play due to injuries from football,” Miller said. “Gus is out with a torn ACL and Peyton Litton is out until January as he is recovering from a fracture in his foot. It changes our lineup as well as the dynamics, but the Huskies will always compete.”
The current group of Huskies learned a lot from those who have moved on, including the six graduated seniors who helped re-establish the program to loftier expectations.
“Those six seniors all brought different talents,” Miller said. “Josh Hess was a great rebounding post, Tanner Oberhansley was a speedy point guard for us, and Michael Mower was a great guard who could finish at the rim. Caleb Hess was a great outside shooting guard, Max Hess was a real ‘bang the boards’ post, and Luke Nedrow was our lockdown defending guard. They will all be missed.”
Miller added that having former head coach Todd Jensen moving on to new adventures was a loss for the program.
“Todd is a great coach, a great mentor, and a great friend,” he said.
With the season getting underway, what can one expect from the Huskies this year? Miller says he hopes fans can see team-oriented, solid fundamental basketball.
“All of our players worked hard at skill development in the offseason, with emphasis on team play and fundamentals at full speed,” he said. “Playing together more has been key in developing the trust and flow that we want and need to be successful and to elevate the offense to a higher level.”
The coach add that senior leadership from Fabanich, Dye, and Toenjes would play a key role in their success, along with Hawkes’ maturity as a basketball player. Miller expects better shooting, execution, and teamwork on the offensive end.
Defensively, Miller says is comes down to simply guarding the hot hand.
“Keeping track of and guarding the good shooters that each team has needs to be improved over our past efforts,” he said. “With the number of three-pointers being taken by teams increasing, staying with those sharpshooters is a priority.”
He said that players like Chris Hansen and Peyton Litton will play a big part in helping to turn up the energy defensively and to help bring defensive pressure.
With a new cast and crew this season, Miller is hoping that his team can buy in to the new coaching regime and philosophy.
“We want to be ‘ALL IN’. It just isn’t about our team, but about our school, community, and all of Husky Nation,” he said. “We have committed to give all we can to put our best team and our best effort on the court game after game. Loyalty and accountability are big components of being ‘ALL IN’”.
Undoubtedly, there is one goal in mind: return to the state tournament. The program has been to the state tournament just one time in their school’s long history – two years ago, where they won the consolation trophy. Miller understands the role that he plays in trying to help his team achieve that goal.
“My managing of the game and our deep bench will be key to our success,” he said. “We have a deep varsity bench this season. Deeper than ever before. We have talented players and sound strategies and should compete each and every night.”
Miller and his team will be tested in the first season. They have the gold standard of success as an opponent in the Nuclear Conference – the Firth Cougars, a perennial power that has won seven of the last 10 state 2A championships.
“The competition in the Nuclear Conference is really tough and the coaches in our conference have some great experience,” he said. “We have a lot of respect for each school and the programs and players they are putting on the court every night. We don’t plan on overlooking anybody. It should be fun.”
The coach understands the great opportunity that it is to be involved in high school basketball in this capacity. He wants his players to understand that great opportunity as well and the memories and experiences that can be had.
“The relationships you make on the court are priceless and timeless,” Miller said. “I love sharing my passion for the game and seeing others develop that same love. I count my blessings to be able to do this.”