Utah State football: Kevin Whimpey doubling down on effort
Logan • After helping his brother off the field at San Jose State, Kevin Whimpey wasn't sure he could leave him sideline.
The healthy half of the Whimpey twins nearly sat out himself in the second half against the Spartans to tend to Kyle, who would eventually be declared out for the year. Since they started playing football, they've never spent much time apart.
"I didn't even know if I would finish the game," Kevin Whimpey said. "When he got hurt, it took a toll on me. I definitely felt it. The coaches came over me and helped me regroup."
At this point in the season, Kevin's heart is with his brother, but he carries that passion out onto the field. Utah State's junior left tackle pushes defenses around because he knows his brother can't.
Kyle, a senior guard, maybe not be able to recover an extra year of eligibility from Idaho State, the school from which they transferred. If Kyle Whimpey has played his last snap as an Aggie, Kevin Whimpey wants to play twice as hard for his brother.
"We've been together ever since either one of us took a snap in football," he said. "It's an adjustment to play without him, but I think I play harder because I'm not just playing for myself, I'm playing for him."
Kevin Whimpey has been a part of a line that's paved the way for big offensive games in the last few weeks. The offense had 492 yards of offense at New Mexico, then 533 yards against Hawaii.
Whimpey said the biggest key has been establishing the line's physicality early. They'll look to do it again this week against a UNLV rushing defense that ranks 118th in the country.
"There's a lot of running in the game plan, and I think it's just about coming off the ball, being physical from the second the whistle blows," he said. "We need to haul butt down to the line and let them know from the start we're here to be physical."
Linebackers getting healthy
With Jake Doughty, Zach Vigil and Kyler Fackrell taking the field every game, it's easy to assume Utah State has been just dandy at the linebacking position.
Not necessarily so, linebackers coach Kevin Clune said. Utah State's linebacking depth, much like many other positions on the team, has been struggling to overcome some injuries.
Tavaris McMillan, for example, may finally have gotten over the hump with his shoulder injury that's taken all year to heal. He had four tackles against Hawaii. Terrell Thompson, a senior who began the season as a starter, has also been battling back. He had a sack last weekend.
"It's good to see those guys get back," Clune said.
Defensive coordinator Todd Orlando said he anticipates safety Brian Suite being ready to go against UNLV. The junior left the Hawaii game early after suffering an undisclosed injury. â¦ One of coach Matt Wells' career highlights as a player came against UNLV: an 85-yard pass to Kevin Alexander. The Aggies would go onto lose in that Sept. 24, 1994 game, but one of the people on the winning sideline was current Utah State offensive line coach Mark Weber, then a coach with the Rebels.
Utah State at UNLV
P Saturday, 6 p.m.
TV • ESPNU