2021 Utes A Lot Like 2019 Utes, But With One Big Difference

Aug 2, 2021, 12:01 PM
Charlie Brewer - Utah Utes...
Utah Utes quarterback Charlie Brewer. (Photo courtesy of Utah Athletics)
(Photo courtesy of Utah Athletics)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – Just two days remain until fall camp begins for the Utah football team and head coach Kyle Whittingham likes what he sees. His roster reminds him a lot of the team that played in the Pac-12 Championship game in 2019.

“We’ve got a lot of established guys like we did in 2019,” Kyle Whittingham said at Pac-12 Media Day. “There are a lot of similarities between those two teams.”

Except for one major difference.

“Of course in 2019 we had the established quarterback in Tyler Huntley. So there was no question there,” Whittingham said.

It’s not uncommon to go into fall camp in college football without a starting quarterback in place. All three FBS schools in Utah will be using 2021’s camp to conclude the competition for the team’s leading signal-caller.

Up on The Hill the competition has come down to four-year transfer Charlie Brewer from Baylor and returning sophomore Cam Rising.

How long the battle for QB1 lasts is something Coach Whittingham and his staff would like a quick resolution to but will also have patience with.

“Tomorrow would be ideal,” Coach Whittingham said. “It’s not going to happen that way so we’ve got to go as long as it takes to get the right guy identified. It’s far more important to come away with the right guy than worry about the timing of it.”

Junior wide receiver Britain Covey is a believer in both quarterbacks. He believes they both know what it takes to win the job.

“Cam was injured last year but he still was the captain of the team and we followed him like that and he’s taken on that role again,” Covey said. “Charlie’s competence level is extremely high and that’s contagious and it builds trust with players.”

Brewer comes to Utah with 44 career games of experience having completed 63.5 percent of his passes for 9,700 yards and 65 touchdowns to just 28 interceptions. He also led the Bears to two bowl games.

Rising was a four-star recruit out of high school who originally committed to Texas. He transferred to Utah before the 2019 season and won the starting job in 2020. But his Utah debut lasted just 14 snaps after suffering a season-ending shoulder injury against USC. The injury has kept him out of spring practices but will not hurt his chances at winning the job again this fall.

“They will get equal reps and are on equal footing,” Coach Whittingham said of his quarterbacks. “Each one of them brings something to the table and I’m excited to watch them compete because they are both ultra-competitive people.”

Utah’s fall camp begins Wednesday, August 4 and will conclude on Saturday, August 21 with a team scrimmage at Rice-Eccles Stadium.

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2021 Utes A Lot Like 2019 Utes, But With One Big Difference