"A lot of people think I just played half the year with an injured shoulder," Van Noy said at media day in June. "It's been the last two years. Mentally, I'm 100 percent. Physically, I'm not there yet. I'll be there soon."
Other players to watch include offensive lineman Ryker Mathews; wide receiver Ross Apo; fullback Iona Pritchard; tight ends Austin Holt, Richard Wilson and Devin Mahina; and placekicker Justin Sorensen, who has been hampered by a back injury.
"I'd love to see how he's really doing," Mendenhall said of Sorensen in June. "He tells me he's making progress. Anytime you have a back injury and it's affected you, I have a concern."
The backup quarterback situation
While BYU is happy to have a senior starting at quarterback in Nelson, the Cougars have precious little experience behind him. Should the injury-prone Nelson go down, his backup, senior James Lark, will step in.
Behind Lark are Jason Munns, Taysom Hill and Ammon Olsen. Hill is regarded as the frontrunner to replace Nelson next season. So how will the coaching staff handle the quarterback situation?
Offensive coordinator Brandon Doman has said he would prefer that Hill and Olsen not redshirt this season, adding that those decisions will be made during fall camp based on their performances. Will there be enough reps to go around for Nelson, Lark and Hill and Olsen? If Hill does not redshirt, how much will he play this season?
Evaluating the newcomers
With so many upperclassmen on the roster, it may be difficult for new players to rise up the depth chart.
However, BYU does have several intriguing newcomers that could make an impact, including defensive lineman Theodore King; running backs Paul Lasike (a Cougar rugby star), Adam Hine, and Jamaal Williams; and wide receivers Terenn Houk and Dylan Collie.
Collie, the younger brother of former Cougar star Austin Collie, is a true freshman. Nelson has liked what he's seen from Collie during summer workouts.
"I've been impressed with Dylan Collie, with his attitude and preparation," Nelson said. "He's just a fun guy to be around. He's a football guy. Is he going to be No. 1 on the depth chart Game One? No. Is he going to need to be there to help us at some point in the season? I can almost guarantee it."
- BYU earns NCAA at-large bid; will face Oregon...
- Breaking down the field: A look at the 68...
- Jimmer Fredette thinks Bulls give him ideal...
- BYU's No. 10 seed surprises national media
- BYU's NCAA tournament fate: 'Anything could...
- Dick Harmon: BYU's Kyle Collinsworth already...
- Utes headed to NIT game at Saint Mary's
- Brad Rock: NCAA can't ignore BYU's tournament...
- Minute-by-minute: How Utah and USU lost... 114
- Utah basketball: Utes outlast... 89
- BYU earns NCAA at-large bid; will face... 80
- Utah basketball: Utes get 'punched in... 75
- BYU basketball: Kyle Collinsworth has... 44
- Utes headed to NIT game at Saint Mary's 31
- Utah basketball: Runnin' Utes advance... 30
- Bubble watch: BYU playing the waiting game 20