UTAH UTES

Five Thoughts On Utah’s Pre-Camp Depth Chart

Oct 9, 2020, 4:56 PM | Updated: 4:59 pm
Nick Ford and Orlando Umana vs. Oregon...
Utah Utes offensive lineman Nick Ford (55) before the Pac-12 Football Championship Game between the Oregon Ducks and the Utah Utes at Levi's Stadium on December 6, 2019 in Santa Clara, CA. (Photo by Cody Glenn/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
(Photo by Cody Glenn/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Utah began their fall camp on Friday afternoon which means a depth chart has been released.

Friday morning, Utah sent the depth chart out to the media. It gives fans and the media an idea of the position battles that will take place over the next four weeks.

Some changes appeared on the fall depth chart compared to the spring depth chart that was released in March. Most of the changes have additions of players that enrolled in the fall that were not with the team during the spring.

Here are five thoughts on the pre-camp depth chart.

1. Offensive Line Movement

Nick Ford is as versatile as it gets on the offensive line. Last season, Ford spent time at right tackle, center and guard. This season, he is expected to move over to left tackle and protect the quarterback’s blind spot. Braeden Daniels moves back to left guard while Johnny Maea is at right guard after sharing reps with Paul Toala at that position last season.

Paul Maile is currently the backup center behind Orlando Umana and Bamidele Olaseni will backup Simi Moala at right tackle.

2. Wide Receiver Depth

Other than the depth of talent at the wide receiver positions, what stood out on the pre-camp depth chart was Tyrone Young-Smith listed as a backup to Britain Covey, competition with Jaylen Dixon for that spot.

Smith has been with Utah since 2015 and has dealt with position changes and injuries. As a freshman in 2015, he played in all 13 games at receiver. In 2016, he played 8 games at receiver and two at cornerback. As a junior in 2017, Smith missed the entire season with an injury and utilized his redshirt. In 2018, he played in three games on special teams and appeared in one game as cornerback against Washington.

Last season, Smith used another redshirt. His big 6’4 body frame will have an impact in the passing game for Utah if he can stay healthy.

3. Backups At Defensive End Positions

We know that Mika Tafua and Maxs Tupai are going to start at the two defensive end positions. Those two split the reps opposite of Bradlee Anae last season. The coaches have said great things about Miki Suguturaga. He is competing for reps as a backup to Tafua on the left edge. Four-star recruit Xavier Carlton will be in the mix to backup Tafua.

On the right side, Tupai will have a competition for his backup as well. Blake Kuithe and former Corner Canyon four-star prospect Van Fillinger will look to fill that gap. BYU transfer Devin Kaufusi is in the mix too.

4. Secondary

As expected, R.J. Hubert and Vonte Davis are listed as starters at free and strong safety. At backup free safety behind Hubert is a battle between three-star freshman Kamo’i Latu and walk-on Zemaiah Vaughn. The strong safety position behind Davis has Nate Ritchie as the backup. Curious where Ben Renfro factors in to this equation.

The left and right cornerback positions don’t have many battles at this point. The main competition at corner is the nickel back. Currently, Malone Mataele is listed as the starter with Clark Phillips III and Aaron Lowe fighting for backup reps. Kyle Whittingham said that Phillips will be in position to play as a true freshman. I expect Phillips to be the starting nickel when camp is over.

5. Linebackers

Devin Lloyd will be a leader on Utah’s defense but who will play alongside him at rover linebacker? Right now it’s Nephi Sewell as expected. Andrew Mata’afa and JUCO transfer Jeremy Mercier will battle for the backup spot.

You can compare the spring and fall depth charts just to see the difference and how deep the team is in the fall compared to spring. Utah only had three practices in the spring before COVID-19 shutdown camp.

Pre-Fall Camp Depth Chart

Offense

Quarterbacks

Drew Lisk
OR
Jake Bentley
OR
Cameron Rising

*Same on spring depth chart

Running Backs

Devin Brumfield
OR
Jordan Wilmore

Spring Depth Chart
Starter: Devin Brumfield
Backup: Jordan Wilmore

Wide Receiver

Starter: Bryan Thompson
Backup: Samson Nacua

*Same on spring depth chart

Wide Receiver

Starter: Solomon Enis
Backup: Devaughn Vele

*Same on spring depth chart

Wide Receiver

Starter: Britain Covey
Backup: Tyrone Young-Smith
OR
Jaylen Dixon

Spring Depth Chart
Starter: Britain Covey
Backup: Tyrone Young-Smith

Tight End

Cole Fotheringham
OR
Brant Kuithe

*Same on spring depth chart

Left Tackle

Starter: Nick Ford
Backup: Luke Felix-Fualalo

Spring Depth Chart
Starter: Nick Ford
Backup: Falcon Kaumatule

Left Guard

Starter: Braeden Daniels
Backup: Keaton Bills

Spring Depth Chart
Starter: Keaton Bills
Backup: Marist Talavou

Center

Starter: Orlando Umana
Backup: Paul Maile

Spring Depth Chart
Starter: Orlando Umana
Backup: Sataoa Laumea

Right Guard

Starter: Johnny Maea
Backup: Sataoa Laumea

Spring Depth Chart
Starter: Braeden Daniels
Backup: Johnny Maea

Right Tackle

Starter: Simi Moala
Backup: Bamidele Olaseni

*Same on spring depth chart

Defense

Left End

Starter: Mika Tafua
Backup: Miki Suguturaga
OR
Xavier Carlton
OR
Junior Tafuna

Spring Depth Chart
Starter: Mufi Hill-Hunt
Backup: Taniela Pututau

Left Tackle

Starter: Hauati Pututau
Backup: Tanoa Togiai

Spring Depth Chart
Starter: Hauati Pututau
Backup: Semisi Lauaki

Right Tackle

Starter: Viane Moala
Backup: Pita Tonga

*Same on spring depth chart

Right End

Starter: Maxs Tupai
Backup: Blake Kuithe
OR
Van Fillinger

Spring Depth Chart

Starter: Mika Tafua
Backup: Tyler Gonzalez

Rover Linebacker

Starter: Nephi Sewell
Backup: Andrew Mata’afa
OR
Jeremy Mercier

Spring Depth Chart
Starter: Andrew Mata’afa
Backup: Nephi Sewell

MAC Linebacker

Starter: Devin Lloyd
Backup: Sione Fotu

Spring Depth Chart
Starter: Devin Lloyd
Backup: Moroni Anae

MAC Linebacker (Used in 4-3 defense, not nickel)

Starter: Hayden Furey
Backup: Moroni Anae

STUD Linebacker Spring Depth Chart
Starter: Hayden Furey
Backup: Samuelu Elisaia

Left Cornerback

Starter: Bronson Boyd
Backup: Drew Rawls

*Same on spring depth chart

Right Cornerback

Starter: JaTravis Broughton
Backup: Faybian Marks

Spring Depth Chart
Starter: JaTravis Broughton
Backup: LaCarea Pleasant-Johnson

Nickel Back

Starter: Malone Mataele
Backup: Clark Phillips III
OR
Aaron Lowe

Spring Depth Chart
Starter: Malone Mataele
OR
Clark Phillips III

Free Safety

Starter: R.J. Hubert
Backup: Kamo’i Latu
OR
Zemaiah Vaughn

Spring Depth Chart
Starter: Vonte Davis
Backup: Ben Renfro

Strong Safety

Starter: Vonte Davis
Backup: Nate Ritchie

Spring Depth Chart
Starter: Stone Azarcon
Backup: Alphonso Taylor

Special Teams

Kicker

Starter: Jadon Redding
Backup: Jordan Noyes

*Same on spring depth chart

Punter

Starter: Ben Lennon
Backup: Jared March

*Same on spring depth chart

Kickoffs

Starter: Jordan Noyes
Backup: Jadon Redding

Holder

Starter: Ben Lennon
Backup: Britain Covey

*Same on spring depth chart

Snapper

Starter: Keegan Markgraf
Backup: Noah Rodriguez-Trammell

*Same on spring depth chart

Kickoff Returner

Starter: Britain Covey
Backup: Bryan Thompson

Punt Returner

Starter: Britain Covey
Backup: Jaylen Dixon

Trevor Allen is a Utah Utes Insider for KSLSports.com and host of the Crimson Corner podcast. Follow him on Twitter: @TrevorASportsYou can download and listen to the podcast, here.

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Five Thoughts On Utah’s Pre-Camp Depth Chart