Provo, UT — As we expected, BYU’s spring game was a series of offensive highlights. Departing QB Christian Stewart made a number of big plays with his arm in his final appearance at Lavell Edwards Stadium.
Stewart was 10/13 for 138 yards during the scrimmage.
“I’ve been blessed with a unique opportunity.” said Stewart, “I’m out there to compete, I don’t care if I’m not really on the team. I want to score touchdowns, I want to look good and I want to make my teammates look good.”
With a number of primary starters being held out of the scrimmage portion of practice it gave the opportunity for backups to showcase their talent in a game type setting.
Two players who stood out were receiver Devon Blackmon and running back Nate Carter.
Nate Carter got the majority of carries from the running back position and made the most of his opportunity. He got things started early with a huge 50 yard run on the first drive of the scrimmage and capped it off by punching it in from the 4-yard line by leaping over defenders into the end zone.
Devon Blackmon stuck out by hauling in a long pass of 40+ yards on the sideline from QB Christian Stewart who also had a number of catches in the 7-on-7 portion of practice.
“This has been the best spring that I’ve been to and I came from Oregon. I feel like we’re really working and this year is going to be our year” said Blackmon, “We have a lot of talent at the receiver position with Nick Kurtz, Kurt Henderson, Mitch Mathews and me. We try to push each other everyday.”
What does he think he adds to the team?
“I think I have energy and explosiveness and I’m very dynamic with the ball in my hands. I can line up in any position and I can take them deep, I can take a hitch to a house call.”
Taysom Hill was impressed with Blackmon as well,
“I think Devon really came out and played well tonight, now it’s just establishing some consistency.”
While Hill was held out of the scrimmage, he played very well in 7-on-7’s including throwing a 50-yard touchdown pass to Blackmon.
Taysom shared his thoughts on the atmosphere of the scrimmage,
“You can’t come into this stadium and not have fun. Even in a scrimmage you’re going to have those pre game jitters. I really liked the way it was structured with offense and defense in separate locker rooms, it really added to the feel of the game.”
One story that has come out during spring camp was the progression of the offense compared to that of the defense. Taysom felt a lot of it had to do with familiarity.
“I think guys have bought in, when Coach Anae first came in with “Go Fast Go Hard”, a lot of us didn’t know what to expect. Now that we have some consistency with guys who have been in the program it really shows.”
While the offense made headlines on Friday night, a few players made some big plays on the defensive side of the ball.
“I feel like we did good. We did really well against the run, we had one backside long run and we struggled against the long ball a little bit. A couple younger guys stepped up and made some plays, it was a lot of fun.” said Remington Peck.
The only negative outcome from the scrimmage was when LB Sae Tautu was taken off the field on the first play as a result of a knee sprain.
“Yeah man, that was a tough deal.” said Peck, “He’s one of my favorite dudes, he battles hard and he’s getting his chance this year. I haven’t heard [what the injury was] but I hope everything is okay and I hope he’s back, he’s a good player.”
Bronson Kaufusi reflected on how he thought the defense performed,
“I felt like the defense did well. I thought there were some big plays that really hurt us and so being able to limit those big plays, if we take them out of the picture, we could keep them out of the end zone a lot more.” He also added, “Spring has gone by fast, but I feel like a lot of improvement has been made in these few weeks. This last week will be key in progressing and moving forward.”
He also shared on how it’s different from last year,
“I feel like we have become a lot more disciplined with assignments, anything that’s asked of any player, we’ve become a lot more disciplined. As for me, it’s working on technique and getting those DL skills down.”
The Cougars will return to practice this week for the final three sessions of practice. After that they will break for about a month during finals and graduation and will begin weight training again in June.
After having an opportunity to see BYU play live what were you encouraged by?
With what you saw, what should Nate Carter’s role be with the offense? Should he get more touches?
Why is Taysom concerned about Devon’s “consistency”?
What kind of an effect do you think moving Bronson back to the DL will have on the defense?
Were the WR’s and Offense in general spoiled this spring by having Christian Stewart at QB?
Share your thoughts in the comments below!