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Day 1 Notebook From BYU Football’s Fall Camp 2019

PROVO, Utah – Day 1 of BYU football fall camp is in the books and the 2019 football season is officially here.

Kalani Sitake’s team went into the Indoor Practice Facility due to the inclement weather outside.  The bad weather did not dampen the excitement around the BYU football program for the upcoming season.

Here’s my notebook from Day 1 of Camp Kalani.

Zach Wilson Update

Wilson was throwing the football and didn’t appear to show any signs of pain.  The sophomore signal-caller who is now wearing number one said it was crazy how fast the past seven months have passed.

Aaron Roderick was coaching up the quarterbacks as they focused on one-on-one drills during practice observation.

After Wilson in the quarterback depth was Jaren Hall then Baylor Romney and the fourth string is Joe Critchlow.  Wilson acknowledged he hasn’t been given anything and that every day is a competition.

Two Potential Starters Were Sidelined 

Senior defensive backs Chris Wilcox and Troy Warner were in street clothes during day one of practice.  Wilcox is still recovering from a surgery he had done this past February.  Troy Warner who had a setback during spring practices with his foot is working his way back to being game ready from that injury.  Both players have redshirts available if needed this fall.

Day 1 of #BYU Football Fall Camp #CampKalani recap with the Cougar Sports Saturday team of Mitch Harper and Matt Baiamonte.

Posted by KSL Sports on Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Kavika Fonua Switches To Linebacker

Redshirt junior Kavika Fonua who is back from a season-ending injury he suffered a season ago is now competing at linebacker.  Fonua, who many around the BYU football program believe is one of the better all-around athletes on the roster, had 24 tackles as a linebacker in 2016.  The previous two seasons saw Fonua competing at running back.

Quiet Confidence

The general feeling that I got around the BYU football team after day 1 was that the coaches and players have a quiet confidence about their potential.  Many of the players did not get into detailed answers because they want their actions to speak louder than their words.

Kicking Competition

According to BYU special teams coordinator Ed Lamb, Jake Oldroyd has a “razor-thin” edge on returning starter Skyler Southam.  Oldroyd who returned from a mission this past December was the more consistent kicker during spring practices.  Oldroyd is also in the mix at punter where he is competing with Danny Jones and Jared Kapisi.

Former Players in Attendance

There’s always a handful of former BYU football players that show up to the opening days of fall camp.  Some of the former players in attendance included Will Snowden, Chad Lewis, Lee Johnson, Jamal Willis, and Peter Tuipulotu.

Running Back By Committee?

BYU running backs coach AJ Steward said to me and Cougar Sports Saturday host Matt Baiamonte that he would be okay with four or five guys toting the football in a game if no one emerges in camp as a clear-cut workhorse.  Sophomore running back Lopini Katoa said that he believes he can be a workhorse back this season for the Cougar offense that looks to be more versatile this fall.

Newcomers Are Good To Go

Other than junior college defensive back Eric Ellison, Kalani Sitake said that he believes all the other newcomers they were expecting to report have shown up.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12-3 pm) on KSL Newsradio. Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper.