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BYU Football - Masen Wake
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Injured BYU Football Players Start Returning To Practice For Baylor Week

Brigham Young fullback Masen Wake, top, dodges a tackle by Arizona State wide receiver Giovanni Sanders (20) during an NCAA college football game at LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo on Saturday, Sept. 18, 2021. (Shafkat Anowar, Deseret News)

PROVO, Utah – At the midway point of the 2021 season, BYU football has tested its depth due to numerous injuries. The past three games have limited the Cougars at certain positions, including the quarterback spot.

But now it appears BYU is starting to get back on the healthy side of the injury ledger as they prepare for a tough test on the banks of the Brazos River against the Baylor Bears.

BYU head coach Kalani Sitake gave a positive injury update heading into the matchup with the 5-1 Bears during his weekly Coaches Show (Tuesday, KSL NewsRadio at 9 p.m.).

“Jaren (Hall) is doing really good in practice. Baylor (Romney) is practicing as well. So is Jacob (Conover),” said Sitake. “We’ll see how the week goes. A lot of the guys that are banged up are practicing. We’ll have to assess who will give us the best chance to perform as an offense and as a defense the best when we get to game time. So Harris LaChance, Masen Wake, those guys, Baylor Romney, are back on the field practicing. We’ll see what happens on Saturday.”

Baylor Romney among injured BYU football players practicing

Jaren Hall, when healthy, is BYU’s starting quarterback. But after him, it’s supposed to be Baylor Romney. Romney suffered a concussion at the end of the first half during the win over Utah State on October 1. The redshirt sophomore quarterback wasn’t available during BYU’s loss to Boise State. BYU was 2-0 with Romney starting at QB.

Without Romney, BYU’s backups at QB behind Hall are freshman Jacob Conover and Sol-Jay Maiava-Peters.

Masen Wake has been out the past two games due to a foot injury he suffered against USF. The absence of Wake has been a bigger loss to this BYU offense than many realize. He’s a valuable weapon in BYU’s attack in the blocking, rushing, and receiving games.

Wake is known for his hurdles that have grown to become a fan-favorite for the BYU faithful. But offensive coordinator Aaron Roderick said after Wake’s injury that he’d like to see his fullback/tight end “keep his feet on the ground.

On Tuesday, wake told The Zone Sports Network, “I’ll be back this week for sure. …I plan on practicing today. Last week, I was close. But just not close enough. I didn’t want to hurt it worse. I talked with some of the coaches, but yeah, it’s just miserable sitting on the sidelines wanting to be out there and help your brothers and just seeing the hurt on their faces after that loss; there’s no way I can miss another game. So that’s my mentality right now.”

Offensive tackle Harris LaChance missed the past two weeks after also getting injured in the win over USF. In replace of LaChance, freshman Campbell Barrington has played at a high level in his first two career starts.

BYU football return specialist and nickelback Caleb Christensen is still recovering from an injury. He will be out this week and possibly a couple more, according to Sitake in his weekly presser on Monday.

Defensive lineman Lorenzo Fauatea got injured during the win over Utah State. The veteran lineman was out for the Boise State game. He wrote on his personal Twitter page Saturday night that it was a “minor setback” and that he would be back for this week’s game against Baylor.

No. 19 BYU takes on the Baylor Bears this Saturday at McLane Stadium in Waco at 1:30 p.m. (MT). The game will be televised on ESPN and heard on KSL Newsradio (102.7 FM, 1160 AM).

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for KSLsports.com and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12–3 p.m.) on KSL Newsradio. Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper.

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