Quarterback Zach Wilson looks healthier and stronger than he was last season, according to offensive coordinator Jeff Grimes, but he says it’s too soon to declare a winner in this year’s quarterback competition.
“[Zach] was playing, but he wasn’t full speed the whole season,” said Grimes, speaking of Wilson’s shoulder injury from last year. “It’s like a receiver who’s trying to run but has a nagging hamstring injury and can’t quite run full speed.”
In recapping the first week of fall camp, Grimes said he was impressed by the play of all quarterbacks, including freshman Sol-Jay Maiava.
“He’s one of those that has stepped in and shown that the moment is not too big for him,” said Grimes. “He doesn’t mind being a freshman out there with a bunch of older guys.”
When asked about standout players from this past week, Grimes was quick to to highlight the improvement made by tight end, Matt Bushman.
“I’ve really been impressed with the jump that he’s taken,” said Grimes. “Running good routes and becoming a consistent blocker have been two things that I can see he’s worked on a lot. He looks stronger to me, he looks fluid.”
While pleased with the talent on the offensive line, Grimes stressed the need for physicality and toughness.
“They have shown at times that they can play at a high level,” he said. “What they have not shown to this point is that they can be the toughest guys on the field all of the time. From what I’ve seen, from the first two days in pads, it appears that they are ready to take that step. They need to play with a high level of aggression and violence and if they do that that’ll be the biggest jump our entire offense can take.”
Written by Bridger Beal
Bridger is a student at Utah Valley University where he studies journalism and mass communication. He is the sports editor of the on-campus newspaper, The Review. Bridger is a life-long Cougar fan and college football enthusiast.