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FIELDER’S CHOICES: Gorman will win state title by ‘redonkulous’ number

Instead of taking a vacation or doing an internship this winter, I’ve decided to stay home and write a book.

It’s going to be titled “2015: The Year of the Butt Punt.”

But this prep football season wasn’t just about my favorite play of all time. There were plenty of great storylines that made the past 15 weeks memorable.

* Coaches used iPads on the sideline to show their players video of previous plays. Either that or they were trying to level up in “The Walking Dead: Road to Survival.”

* Rancho snapped a 30-game losing skid, then added two more wins after that.

* The Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association made the McKayla Maroney face at another request to allow Bishop Gorman to compete in a made-for-TV national championship game.

* Chaparral won its first playoff game in so long, the stats and info department couldn’t even find the Cowboys’ last postseason victory in our record books.

* Pahranagat Valley extended its winning streak to 93 games, tying the national record for eight-man football.

I could go on about all the stuff that happened this season, but you’ll just have to wait for me to finish the book. Until then, here is my take on Saturday’s Division I state title game at Sam Boyd Stadium.

See you at the end of basketball season!

BISHOP GORMAN (14-0) vs. LIBERTY (11-1)

This is the fourth meeting in the past five seasons, and the challenge for the Patriots is to close the gap on Gorman.

The Gaels won last year’s state semifinal matchup 50-0 and pounded Liberty 63-10 in the 2012 state final.

Hopefully this game resembles the 2011 state semifinal when Gorman trailed twice in the first half and led 28-27 midway through the third quarter before pulling away for a 56-34 victory.

Liberty, which won its sixth straight Sunrise Region title last week, has embraced the challenge of trying to take down the Gaels as much as any program in the area. USA Today noticed and believes the Patriots are one of the Pacific region’s top seven teams.

I’m skeptical of that lofty ranking — the strength-of-schedule boost for Gorman is a nice little ancillary benefit — but maybe the Patriots will prove me wrong.

How Liberty can win: This is like a Catch-22. (My English teacher better give me extra credit for that reference.)

As I wrote last week when Reed took on Gorman, getting into a high-scoring shootout favors the Gaels. But to ask the Patriots to change their identity after 12 games and ditch their no-huddle offense is not realistic, either.

So, if Liberty’s game plan is to make this a basketball game on artificial turf, the Patriots need to be near perfect on their 2-point conversions, especially if the score stays close. They went 4-for-9 last week against Basic and still hung a 60-burger on the scoreboard.

Why Gorman will win: The Gaels this season faced top teams from Arizona and Utah, teams from New Jersey and Washington that are playing this week for a state title, and a team from California that featured one of the nation’s top quarterback recruits.

Gorman hasn’t allowed more than 20 points in a game. Redonkulous.

Sure, Gorman’s offense gets a lot of attention, and rightfully so. But the defense will ensure Gorman takes home its seventh straight state title and its 77th consecutive win against in-state opponents. … Gorman by 28.

Last week: 2-0, 2-0 (with points)

Season: 81-26, 67-35-2 (with points)

— Contact Fielder at Fielder@nevadapreps.com. Follow him: @FielderNVP

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