July 31, 2013
LOGAN, Utah - Utah State's football team will officially begin fall camp on Friday, Aug. 2 with its first practice from 2:15 to 4:15 p.m., on the USU practice field located between the football stadium and the indoor practice facility. All practices during fall camp, which concludes on Saturday, Aug. 24, are open to the public.
First-year head coach Matt Wells welcomes back 49 lettermen (offense-23, defense-22, specialists-4) and 18 starters (offense-8, defense-7, specialists-3) from its most successful team in school history as USU ended the 2012 season with a school-best 11-2 record as it set school records for wins (11) and home wins (6), while recording just its second bowl win in school history with a 41-15 victory against Toledo in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. USU also won its first outright conference championship since 1936, as it went 6-0 in the Western Athletic Conference, and just its third in school history joining the 1921 and 1936 teams that both won Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference titles. USU ended the 2012 season ranked No. 16 in the Associated Press Poll and No. 17 in the final ESPN/USA Today Coaches' Poll.
"We are very excited to start the season with our new staff and the 2013 edition of the Aggies," Wells said. "We challenged our players to have a summer that exceeded what they have done in the past and I'm excited to see those results play out on the practice field. There are a lot of expectations from both the outside and internally with this year's team and we look forward to those challenges. I expect a high-energy and fast-paced practice Friday."
Practices on Friday and Saturday, Aug. 2-3, will have players in helmets, practice jerseys and shorts as part of the five-day acclimation period before adding shoulder pads for practices next Monday and Tuesday, Aug. 5-6. USU will then be in full pads on Wednesday, Aug. 7 leading up to its first two-a-day practice on Thursday, Aug. 8. USU's first scrimmage will be on Merlin Olsen Field at Romney Stadium on Saturday, Aug. 10 at 10 a.m.
Utah State's offense in 2012 ended up being one of the best in school history, statistically, as it set single-season school records for total points (454), total offense (6,108 yards), completions (285), completion percentage (.679), total yards per game (469.8) and total yards per attempt (6.83), while ranking second in points per game (34.9), total passing yards (3,445), first downs (272) and touchdowns (59).
Nationally, Utah State's 2012 offense ranked second in the WAC and 23rd in the country in total offense (469.8 ypg), second in the WAC and 18th in the nation in passing efficiency (153.21), second in the WAC and 25th in the nation in rushing offense (204.8 ypg), third in the WAC and 31st in the nation in sacks allowed (1.38 pg), third in the WAC and 33rd in the nation in scoring offense (34.9 ppg), and third in the WAC and 39th in the nation in passing offense (265.0 ypg).
Utah State's 2012 defense ranked among the top 15 in the nation in five different statistical categories, including being ranked first in the WAC and seventh in the nation in scoring defense (15.38 ppg), which is the fewest by an Aggie defense since 1965. USU also ranked second in the WAC and tied for sixth nationally in sacks (3.23 pg), first in the WAC and 10th in the nation in pass efficiency defense (104.43), second in the WAC and 13th in the country in rushing defense (113.77 ypg), first in the WAC and 15th in the nation in total defense (322.08 ypg), and first in the WAC and 32nd in the nation in passing defense (208.31 ypg). USU's defense also led the WAC and ranked second in the nation in red zone efficiency at 63.6 percent allowing just 13 touchdowns and 15 field goals on 44 trips inside the 20.
Highlighting Utah State's returners is senior linebacker Jake Doughty (Draper, Utah/Juan Diego HS), sophomore linebacker Kyler Fackrell (Mesa, Ariz./Mesa HS), junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton (Houston, Texas/Cypress Creek HS), senior center Tyler Larsen (Salt Lake City, Utah/Jordan HS) and senior offensive tackle Eric Schultz (Connell, Wash./Connell HS) who all earned first-team all-WAC honors in 2012. Returning second-team all-league players from a year ago include senior cornerback Nevin Lawson (Lauderhill, Fla./Piper HS), senior offensive guard Jamie Markosian (Salt Lake City, Utah/Juan Diego HS), sophomore defensive end Jordan Nielsen (Lewiston, Utah/Sky View HS) and junior linebacker Zach Vigil (Clearfield, Utah/Clearfield HS), while senior defensive end Connor Williams (Kanata, Ontario, Canada/Holy Trinity HS) earned honorable mention all-WAC accolades in 2012.
Other offensive starters returning for Utah State in 2013 include senior wide receiver Travis Reynolds (Lauderdale Lakes, Fla./Boyd Anderson HS), senior tight end D.J. Tialavea (West Jordan, Utah/West Jordan HS), junior offensive tackle Kevin Whimpey (Highland, Utah/Idaho State), and senior offensive guard Kyle Whimpey (Highland, Utah/Idaho State).
Utah State also returns three starting specialists from a year ago in junior placekicker/holder Jaron Bentrude (Draper, Utah/Juan Diego HS), junior placekicker Nick Diaz (Redondo Beach, Calif./Redondo Union HS), and junior long snapper Nate Needham (St. George, Utah/Pine View HS).
Utah State lost five players who earned all-WAC honors in 2012 highlighted by senior defensive back Will Davis, senior defensive lineman Al Lapuaho and senior running back Kerwynn Williams who all earned first-team all-WAC honors, while senior wide receiver Matt Austin and senior safety McKade Brady were both named to the second-team, and senior tight end Kellen Bartlett and senior wide receiver Chuck Jacobs were both named honorable mention all-WAC.
Utah State, who is entering its first season in the Mountain West after spending the past eight years in the WAC, will open the 2013 season on Thursday, Aug. 29 at Utah and play its first Mountain West game the following weekend at Air Force on Saturday, Sept. 7. USU's first home game of the 2013 campaign will be on Saturday, Sept. 14 against Weber State, while its first home Mountain West game will be on Saturday, Oct. 12 against Boise State.
Fans can follow the Aggie football program at twitter.com/USUFootball. Aggie fans can also follow the Utah State athletic program at twitter.com/USUAthletics or on facebook at Utah State University Athletics.
Utah State Football Practice Dates, Times and Location Fri., Aug. 2 --- 2:15 - 4:15 p.m. (Practice Field) Sat., Aug. 3 --- 2:15 - 4:15 p.m. (Practice Field) Mon., Aug. 5 --- 2:15 - 4:15 p.m. (Practice Field) Tues., Aug. 6 --- 2:15 - 4:15 p.m. (Romney Stadium) Wed., Aug. 7 --- 9:15 - 11:15 a.m. (Romney Stadium) Thur., Aug. 8 --- 9:15 - 11:15 a.m./4:55 - 6:25 p.m. (Practice Field/Stadium) --- First Two-A-Day Fri., Aug. 9 --- 9:15 - 11:15 a.m. (Romney Stadium) Sat., Aug. 10 --- 10:00 - 11:30 a.m. (Romney Stadium) --- Scrimmage #1 Mon., Aug. 12 --- 9:15 - 11:15 a.m./4:55 - 6:25 p.m. (Practice Field) Tues., Aug. 13 --- 9:15 - 11:15 a.m. (Practice Field/Stadium) Wed., Aug. 14 --- 9:15 - 11:15 a.m./4:55 - 6:25 p.m. (Stadium/Practice Field) --- Scrimmage #2 Thur., Aug. 15 --- 2:40 - 4:40 p.m. (Practice Field) Fri., Aug. 16 --- 9:15 - 11:15 a.m./4:55 - 6:25 p.m. (Practice Field)
FOOTBALL FAMILY FUN DAY, sponsored by Macy's Sat., Aug. 17 --- 6:00 p.m. (Merlin Olsen Field at Romney Stadium) --- Scrimmage #3
Mon., Aug. 19 --- 9:15 - 11:15 a.m./3:55 - 5:25 p.m. (Practice Field) Tues., Aug. 20 --- 2:40 - 4:40 p.m. (Practice Field) Wed., Aug. 21 --- 2:40 - 4:40 p.m. (Practice Field) Thur., Aug. 22 --- 9:15 - 11:15 a.m. / 3:55 - 5:25 pm (Practice Field) Fri., Aug. 23 --- 2:40 - 4:40 p.m. (Practice Field) Sat., Aug. 24 --- 12:00 - 2:00 p.m. (Romney Stadium)
End of Camp NOTE: All dates, times and locations subject to change.
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