Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Utah State football: Veterans set pace at first practice
College football » Coach says Aggies newcomers “need to pick it up.”
First Published Aug 02 2013 06:14 pm • Last Updated Aug 02 2013 11:29 pm

Logan • There were some good things out of the newcomers at Utah State’s first fall practice on Friday afternoon, coach Matt Wells said. He was impressed that the Aggies’ freshmen and incoming transfers knew where to line up.

"I was proud of the newcomers for that, because they actually could make it look like football for a second," he said. "But it’s just the pace — they need to pick it up. And they will."

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

Utah State’s experienced players set the bar in the team’s brisk start to fall camp, albeit without pads. There was a clear gap in tempo between the veterans and those who are just putting on Aggies jerseys for the first time, and the team is expecting to see that gap close quickly.

"The new guys — they’re adjusting, let’s just say that," quarterback Chuckie Keeton said. "We did a lot of player-run practices over the summer, but at the same time, you don’t have the eyes of the head coach and your assistant coaches beating down on you at every single move you have."

And beat down, they did, as the coaches were pressing the newcomers to keep up with the returners.

On defense, linebackers Zach Vigil and Jake Doughty led by example, getting penetration into the pocket and forcing Keeton to scramble. Corners Nevin Lawson and Rashard Stewart put pressure on the Aggies receivers, at one time tipping up a pass that landed in linebacker Kyler Fackrell’s hands.

"I felt that, for being the first practice, everybody knew their assignments," Vigil said. "That’s the biggest part of playing fast, you have to know what you’re doing."

The Utah State offense finished off with a spirited attack, with Keeton tossing some completions to Travis Reynolds and Joe Hill in particular. But the unit understands they’ve got some catching up to do.

Still, it’s Day One. Although Wells expects his squad to keep up the effort, he said he was waiting for padded practice for further evaluation.

"We’re wearing helmets," he said. "So we’ll know more Monday."

story continues below
story continues below

Byrd makes a return

Cornerback Quinton Byrd had been hoping for a standout senior season in 2012, but it was cut short three games into the season with a season-ending injury.

Now, he finally gets a second chance.

Byrd said it was refreshing to return to the field for the first time in nearly a year. He had a few moments in the first session, highlighted by when he jumped a route and nearly intercepted a pass near the line of scrimmage.

"Man, it feels great," he said. "Hopefully this year, we can get it done, and I can be a part of it."


Twitter: @kylegoon

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment

About Reader Comments

Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.