Tom Smart, Deseret News
PROVO — With spring ball in the books, and the 2013 season-opener at Virginia about five months away, BYU's Taysom Hill has high expectations about what the newly installed Cougar offense is capable of this fall.
"Going really fast," said the sophomore quarterback. "When we get going, it's tough to stop. I expect us to go really fast and score a lot of points."
Scoring points on a consistent basis was something last year's offense lacked, which led to coach Bronco Mendenhall's decision to replace his offensive staff.
Keeping the quarterbacks healthy was also troublesome for BYU last season.
Starter Riley Nelson suffered a back injury early in the year and missed a handful of contests. Hill started in place of Nelson midway through the season and though he won both of his starts, he sustained a season-ending knee injury at the end of the Utah State game.
Hill, who completed 42-of-71 passes for 425 yards and rushed 55 times for 336 yards last season, said he's about 80-85 percent healthy now.
How is his knee these days?
"It feels good," Hill said. "It definitely got more fatigued as I went through spring. But it held up. I felt strong. I got a little fatigued, but for the most part, I feel really good."
During spring practices, Hill took the majority of snaps, but did not participate in the scrimmages as a precautionary measure.
"The doctor and trainers were pretty cautious with some of the things that I did and held me out of some of the drills this spring," Hill said. "I don't think any of my strength is lacking there. I just haven't had this much capacity since last October In the next couple of weeks, I'll rest up and stay in shape and then I'll really ramp it up and see how I feel."
Overall, Hill said he saw improvement from himself and his teammates during spring drills.
"We definitely got getter. Myself, personally, from Day One to Day 15, I got better," Hill said. "I like the way we're moving as an offensive unit. This has given us a lot of momentum going into spring and summer, which will be really big for our program. I'm excited about it."
Which players impressed Hill during the spring?
"I think our backs looked really good. (Running back) Adam Hine had injuries all last season and I'm not surprised to see him come out and make plays, because I knew he could, but he just didn't have much of an opportunity to do so. Same thing with (running back) Paul Lasike. We've been able to see a year of playing football under his belt, and he looked a lot better and made a name for himself this spring."
Hill also liked what he saw from junior Michael Yeck and sophomore Terrance Alletto on the offensive line.
"They both looked really good," Hill said. "I was happy with their progress and the way they protected and made plays for us."
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