Utah State Offense To Have Different Look With Blake Anderson Calling Shots

Aug 30, 2023, 10:58 AM

LOGAN, Utah – Cooper Legas returns at quarterback but the Utah State offense will look a little different in 2023 as Blake Anderson will call plays this season.

USU will take on the No. 25 Hawkeyes in Iowa City, IA on Saturday, September 2. Kickoff is scheduled for 10:03 a.m. (MT).

Anderson joined KSL Sports Zone Hans & Scotty to talk about the Aggie offense ahead of their season opener.

RELATED: 2023 Utah State Aggies Football Schedule

“With us being as new as we are,” Anderson began, “We’re still trying to figure out our guys. The challenge to go play in this environment against this team would be tough regardless. Considering the amount of new bodies and new staff, it makes it more of a challenge for us.”

Anderson will take over the play-calling responsibilities in Logan with co-offensive coordinator Kyle Cefalo assisting.

RELATED: Utah State Football Has Questions To Answer Against Iowa Hawkeyes

“He’ll need to be thinking for me and finishing my sentences,” Anderson said of the relationship between him and Cefalo. “We’ve been together for ten years now. We’re in every meeting together, we’ve thought through things. He’s gonna be calling plays at some point in his career… I want him thinking that way.”

The combination of Anderson’s knowledge at field level and Cefalo’s perspective in the booth will hopefully lead Utah State’s offense to success.

“What he sees up top is critical to what I can’t see on the field and the way that we play. It’s important for me to keep my mind on what’s going on right now. His ability to be above that and look at future priorities… it’s critical to us getting to good counters off of what we’ve already been doing.”

RELATED: Utah State Ready To Test Themselves Against Iowa Hawkeyes

Will Legas’ Offseason Work Make Utah State Offense A Threat?

Hopefully alleviating some of the challenge is senior quarterback Cooper Legas. Legas started eight games with ten appearances last season.

After taking over for the injured Logan Bonner early in the year, Legas completed 135-of-221 passes (.611) for 1,499 yards with 11 touchdowns and ten interceptions. Add in 303 yards on the ground and Legas accounted for 1,802 yards of offense in 2022.

According to Anderson, Legas took all of the necessary steps to reach the next level this year.

RELATED: How To Watch Utah State Football @ Iowa Hawkeyes

“I feel like he’s done everything to prepare the right way,” Anderson said of Legas. “I believe he’s learned a lot and grown up tremendously.”

“I’ve grown a lot,” Legas said of his offseason. “With Coach Anderson, he emphasizes taking care of the ball. All the quarterbacks have improved tremendously in taking care of the ball and not being careless. Finding check-downs and just being responsible for the offense and the team and making sure we take care of everything.”

Despite playing in ten games last season and already appearing in two bowls games during his career, this will be the first season-opening start for Legas.

“I think the true test of any player, especially the quarterback, is how they manage the moment. This is going to be a big moment. It’s gonna be a big crowd, loud. A really good defense that is very opportunistic… He’s gonna get tested in a big way.”

Aggie Depth Report

  • Senior safety Omari Okeke has been lost for the season after undergoing shoulder surgery.
  • Safety Anthony Switzer is expected to make his Aggie debut against the Hawkeyes after missing last season due to a knee injury. Switzer is listed as a starting linebacker on USU’s initial depth chart.
  • Redshirt freshman Paul Fitzgerald is listed as a starting defensive end ahead of week one against Iowa. Fitzgerald saw action in two games as a true freshman without recording a stat.
  • Defensive tackle Hale Motu’apuaka and tight end Broc Lane are both day-to-day with injuries.
  • Anderson said he expects to be without starting tight end Josh Sterzer for the first couple of weeks ‘at a minimum’. True freshman Will Monney is listed as the Aggies third tight end and could see some snaps if Lane is unavailable

Following The Aggies With KSL Sports Zone

Utah State begins the 2023 campaign with a road test against the No. 25 Hawkeyes. Iowa hosts the Aggies on Saturday, September 2 with a 10 a.m. (MT) season-opening kickoff.

Utah State football games are found on KSL Sports Zone with Scott Garrard and former Aggie quarterback Kevin White (1988-89) on the call.

KSL Sports coverage of Utah State University Athletics can be found here. 

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Utah State Offense To Have Different Look With Blake Anderson Calling Shots