By Casey Slaughter
Photos by Dave Argyle (DBA Photography)
“He’s a winner.” That’s how Bingham head basketball coach Jake Schroeder describes senior Kyle Gearig.
Over the last two years as the Miners’ quarterback, Gearig has led the team to a regular-season record of 19-1, and back-to-back state championships. He has been a threat to run and throw the ball, averaging 5.4 yards per carry with 18 touchdowns, while also completing 56 percent of his passes and throwing for 50 touchdowns.
When talking about his ability to win, Schroeder said
“He hasn’t lost to a team in Utah (in football),” Schroeder said midway through the basketball season in describing Gearig’s winning nature, “and I don’t think we’ve lost a game since he’s came back.”
He was right at the time. From the time the Bingham sixth man returned from an elbow injury on Dec. 30 against Salem Hills, the Miners won eight straight and 12-of-13 games before being knocked out in the state tournament quarterfinals by eventual state champion Layton. Gearig immediately showed his value in his first action of the season, scoring 14 points to help lead Bingham to a 67-48 win over Salem Hills.
Playing two sports has helped Gearig elevate his game. Gearig is constantly working on getting shots up during the offseason in order to be prepared for the basketball season.
“I’m in pretty good shape by the time basketball gets around. I’m used to the physicality,” Gearig said. “I don’t get as sore when I get pushed around because I’m used to getting hit.”
Gearig has grown used to getting a late start to the basketball season due to injuries. He left before halftime of the 2013 state championship game due to a concussion and missed the state football final this year due to a dislocated elbow he suffered in the semifinal game.
“I haven’t been able to start the (basketball) season on time because I’m always injured (from) football,” Gearig said. “I make sure to play basketball during the football season.
Schroeder made a big emphasis on that with me, Mikey (Green), and Schyler (Shoemaker). He just wanted to make sure we still had our shots so we didn’t come into the season behind everyone else.”
Gearig’s hopes of adding a basketball state ring to his collection of two from football did not materialize, but the success of the basketball season was a strong follow-up to his work on the gridiron.
The senior has not received any firm collegiate offers, and he plans on serving a two-year mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints before returning and weighing his options for playing one of his sports at the next level.