BYU Starting Safety Micah Harper Announces He’s Out For 2023 Season

Aug 17, 2023, 10:01 AM | Updated: Aug 18, 2023, 11:02 am

PROVO, Utah – BYU football will be without starting safety Micah Harper for the 2023 season.

Harper, a 5-foot-10, 190-pound strong safety, suffered a season-ending ACL injury during fall camp.

He wasn’t at practice during the media observation portion on Tuesday.

It’s the second time in Harper’s BYU career that he has been sidelined for an entire season due to an injury. The Chandler, Arizona native missed the 2021 season due to a knee injury he suffered in spring practice.

Harper dropped a social media post that had the caption, “I walk by faith and not by sight and know that God’s plan and timing is > than mine. To be continued in 2024…”

BYU teammate Isaac Rex responded to Harper’s post on Instagram saying, “Comeback gonna be special.”

Micah Harper is one of the top defenders in the BYU defense

Last year, he was limited through the first month due to an ankle injury. After returning to full strength, Harper emerged as one of the stars on a struggling BYU defense. Harper accounted for 62 tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss, two forced fumbles, and three pass deflections. His play last season garnered Freshman All-American recognition from

Harper was a proven hard-hitting safety on the backend of the defense. Now BYU will look for other answers to fill that void.

After the first day of fall camp earlier this month, Harper said that he was “ready to step into that leadership role” on BYU’s defense for the 2023 season.

The loss of Harper is a significant blow to a new, revamped defense under the direction of first-year defensive coordinator Jay Hill.

What’s next?

Hill’s position group on the BYU defense is the safety group. Last Saturday, Hill put out a challenge for his safeties after BYU’s first scrimmage of camp.

“I want to see some more separation over these next 15 practices on somebody stepping up to be a big-time Big 12 all-conference defender,” BYU defensive coordinator Jay Hill said after Saturday’s scrimmage. “And that’s what we’ve got to continue to see is a little bit more separation in that group.”

In the future, BYU could switch Weber State transfer Eddie Heckard from corner/nickel to the strong safety spot. BYU has returning starter Malik Moore as a super senior competing for the free safety spot with redshirt sophomore Talan Alfrey.

During Tuesday’s media observation portion, BYU was led by Malik Moore and Talan Alfrey as the first-team safeties.

Another player to watch at safety is redshirt freshman Chika Ebunoha, a hard-hitting athlete from Arizona. BYU also has heralded returned missionary Raider Damuni in the mix as well.

Micah Harper has already used his redshirt season during his collegiate career. He would have to apply for a medical redshirt year from the NCAA to get this season back. Harper has two years of eligibility remaining.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast (SUBSCRIBE) and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12–3 p.m.) on KSL Newsradio. Follow Mitch’s coverage of BYU in the Big 12 Conference on Twitter/X and Threads: @Mitch_Harper.

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BYU Starting Safety Micah Harper Announces He’s Out For 2023 Season