On redshirting last year:
"I wanted to play in the beginning, and Coach Andersen came to me and said he thought he was going to redshirt me. I told him I'd trust whatever he decided, but that I'd rather play. They decided to redshirt me and that's fine. I got a lot of experience and I got to know the defense a lot better. It's basically the same this year. There are a few things that are called different, but overall it's pretty similar."
Comments from redshirt senior tight end Kellen Bartlett:
Thoughts on the tight ends:
"We have D.J. (Tialavea), myself, Keegan (Andersen), Brad Theurer and Travis Swann rolling the tight end room. Coaches like what we can do. We offer a lot of disadvantages and mismatches against the defenses. We've got the size and advantages. We're just going to go out there and bring our A-game.
"You've seen a lot of schools like Stanford and Wisconsin that really emphasize tight end play. I'm not going to say that's what we're going to go to, but it's nice to have that option. It's nice to have two tight ends you can put on the field and let them split out. It throws a lot of curveballs at the defense.
"When I first came here, we were running quads, four wide receivers, you see that a lot in college ball. But when you go to the next level, it's almost as if the tight ends never leave the field. When you provide that, we can run plays in two minutes, which you can't usually do out of quads. It's nice to have the option.
"Usually tight ends are better blockers than receivers. That's a huge thing for us. It would be nice if we can get two tight ends out there on the hurry-up. That's unique and offers an advantage. We're just trying to find the best way to get the best players on the field, always. You want reliable players. Guys you can count on day in and day out. That's something I'm working on every single day, trying to get better and improve — play faster and be more reliable."
On being back after last year’s injury:
"It hurt missing last year, big time. There's a reason for everything. I'm going to go out there and do it. Let's make history. Why not win a WAC championship, why not win the bowl game this time. I missed out with Bobby (Wagner) and Robert (Turbin) and Quinn (Garner) and all my guys that I was supposed to be gone with. I missed out with them and it hurt me.
"Every day I still wear the bowl band around my wrist as a reminder to get back to where we were. I want it. I want to go bowling, but to win it. I think our main focus though is the WAC and our first game. It's great to talk about all we want to do and what we're trying to do, what our goals are. But our main focus is when we take that field against Southern Utah. Are we going to be ready to start fast and finish the game strong?
"If we can find a team that can be that consistent and reliable, start fast, play strong all four quarters, we'll be very dangerous. The sky's the limit for us, no doubt."
Doug Hoffman is the assistant athletic director for Utah State University Athletic Media Relations.
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