Monkres returning to Dixie; D-Hills also has new coach

ST. GEORGE – Sources close to the athletic department have confirmed that former head coach Blaine Monkres is returning to coach Dixie High School football.

File photo by Robert Hoppie, St. George News

Monkres will take the reins back from Andy Stokes, a former assistant of his who took over as the head coach in 2015 when Monkres left to take the offensive coordinator position at Dixie State University. Monkres also coached one year at Murray High School, then spent last season as the head coach of the 6A Riverton Silver Wolves. Riverton was 3-8 last season.

Stokes, who was 26-9 in three seasons with the Flyers, was named the head coach at Timpview last week.

Monkres has 28 years of coaching experience at the high school level. He has guided his teams to three state championships, and eight region championships. His teams have qualified for the state tournament 21 of his 27 years. Previous to Dixie High School, he was the head coach at Fremont and Morgan. He was named Utah Football Coach of the Year in 1993 and 2012.

Monkres’ spouse Kim, the former athletic director at Desert Hills High School, had taken a position in Salt Lake City with the Utah High School Activities Association as Assistant Director in 2015. But Kim Monkres returned to southern Utah last year as a vice principal at Fossil Ridge Intermediate.

Blaine Monkres was briefly employed by Dixie State as the offensive coordinator, but was asked to take a lesser job by the new head coach, Shay McClure. Unhappy with the situation, Monkres left DSU and went to Murray High to coach. In his one season with the Spartans, they went 3-6, averaging 30 points a game, but surrendering 37 per contest.

Monkres is known for his Madden Football-style offense, traditionally leading the state in scoring and yardage. He led the Flyers to state championships in 2012 (3A) and 2014 (3AA).

Desert Hills names Mark Murdoch as new football coach

Less than two weeks after firing head coach Carl Franke, Desert Hills administrators named Mark Murdoch as their new football coach.

Mark Murdoch

Murdock, who coached the running backs at junior college powerhouse Snow College last season, is from Payson and has previously coached at Payson and Springville High Schools. He went to college at Ashford University in San Diego, graduating in 2013.

Murdoch was being introduced to the team Wednesday night.

“I’m not coming in to blow things up and start over,” Murdoch said. “Props to Coach Franke. He’s done an awesome job. That makes things a little easier for me. Things are already in place and the players already know how to work hard.”

Murdoch was part of an offensive staff at Snow last season that led junior college on points scored and yardage gained. He promises to bring that style and production to Desert Hills.

“We’re going to spread ’em out and go uptempo,” he said. “This could be a really potent offense, with quick reads by the quarterback and I believe it’s fairly easy to learn.”

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