No one expected the events of this past weekend for college football teams in the state of Utah. The Utes struggled against Montana State, the Cougars offense struggled to finish in Oxford and the Aggies nearly upset the defending national champions.
The first weekend of college football is always so telling because there are always so many questions coming out of fall camp. There is only so much you can glean from scrimmages against your own team. Utah’s offense struggled during their fall camp scrimmages. Is that because the Ute defense is dominant or the offense has problems? BYU’s offense looked good during their scrimmages. Does that mean their offense is as good as we keep hearing or their defense needs help? Some of those questions were answered this weekend, at least in part. Here are five things we learned this past weekend.
1. Utah State is moving in the right direction. While Ute and Cougar fans are struggling to find answers for their teams’ offensive struggles, the Aggie faithful are getting excited for their home opener against Weber State after nearly upsetting the defending national champions on home turf. Utah State is probably not the best football team in the state, but players did play the best football of any team in the state this past weekend. We learned that Chuckie Keeton is the real deal, after he led his team to an impressive offensive performance at Auburn, and Robert Turbin is everything we thought he was.
2. For his sake, let’s dial down the Jake Heaps hype. Before it gets to Jimmer proportions, it’s time to let Heaps do what Jimmer did before we anoint him the second coming of Ty Detmer. (OK, maybe a bad example). It was clear on Saturday that Heaps was buying into his hype a little too much. Some passes that required a little more touch were zipped right by the hands of open receivers in Oxford. He’s going to be good, there’s no doubt about that, but for his sake, let’s let him do what we know he can do. Then we can start reserving seats at the Heisman Trophy presentation ceremony.
3. Jordan Wynn is not Ty Detmer. Speak of the devil. It is clear now that Norm Chow was trying to give Wynn some much-needed confidence heading into the season when he compared him to Ty Detmer. In fact, it’s clear that the whole fall camp game plan was designed to give Wynn confidence. Before any of us saw the tentative, hesitant Wynn on Thursday night, the coaching staff saw all in two-a-days. Wynn was throwing nearly everything off his back foot and looked afraid of stepping into any of his passes.
4. The Utes have a playmaker. It’s not DeVonte Christopher. It’s not Jordan Wynn. It’s junior college transfer John White IV. White was the lone offensive bright spot for the Utes on Thursday night. His speed and shiftiness will be causing havoc for Pac-12 defenses all year. His size may keep him hidden from linebackers, but it could also be a cause for concern. At 5’8” and 186 pounds, he will be susceptible to injury, especially this week against the hard-hitting front seven of USC.
5. BYU’s defense might be pretty good. The difference in the defense from the time Bronco Mendenhall took over for Jaime Hill has been unprecedented. Mendenhall has the BYU defense playing very well. It was clear that the Ole Miss offense was less than stellar, but the vaunted running game of the rebels was shut down by the Cougars. If that’s not enough, the defense was responsible for as many points as Jake Heaps was on Saturday.
Trevor Amicone is the sports director at 88.1 Weber FM "Ogden's Radio Station" and host of the sports talk radio show "Fully Loaded Sports with Trevor Amicone." To check out more blogs, go to trevorstoptens.com.