UTAH STATE AGGIES

Anderson Undecided On Who Starts At Quarterback For Utah State

Oct 30, 2023, 1:31 PM

cooper legas mccae hillstead...

Utah State quarterbacks Cooper Legas and McCae Hillstead have each played well enough to be the starter

LOGAN, Utah – Inconsistent play and 13 combined interceptions have left the Utah State Aggies searching for an answer at quarterback as the season enters November.

Utah State (3-5, 1-3) travels to San Diego for a matchup against the San Diego State Aztecs (3-5, 1-3) on Saturday, November 4. Kickoff is scheduled for 5 p.m. (MT).

Utah State head coach Blake Anderson spoke with the media at the Aggies weekly press conference on Monday afternoon.

RELATED: Running Back Shift Highlights Utah State’s Week Ten Depth Chart

“Both guys have had that unforced turnover that we cannot overcome,” Anderson lamented of his two Utah County quarterbacks. “I’ve been really clear with both that neither are playing at the level that they can. I think both can play better.”

Last year’s starter, Cooper Legas broke fall camp as the starter but up and down play led to a change as Anderson looked for a spark. Enter freshman quarterback McCae Hillstead. Hillstead went on to lead a furious comeback against Air Force before throwing for 399 yards and four touchdowns the following week in a loss to James Madison. The gaudy numbers didn’t come without mistakes as Hillstead tossed five interceptions before a concussion forced him out of the lineup against UConn.

Back in the starting role, Legas turned the ball over four times in starts against Colorado State and Fresno State. When Hillstead returned last week against San Jose State, he promptly threw two more interceptions, bringing his season total to seven.

“We turn the ball over too much and both of them have had issues with that. We dissected a lot of things last week and I was hard on them. I’m going to continue to watch them and see how they’re carrying themselves and responding. We’ll make a final decision later in the week.”

Anderson said that both quarterbacks will receive equal reps in practice until a decision is made on who will start.

“Protect the football. Give ourselves a chance to win,” Anderson said simply.

Freshman Quarterback Learning On The Field

When Blake Anderson released the Aggies first depth chart in August, true freshman quarterback McCae Hillstead was listed third, behind starter Cooper Legas and presumed backup Levi Williams. At the time, few would have predicted Hillstead to ascend to the head of the QB room this year.

Instead, early season struggles from Legas led Blake Anderson to bring Hillstead in after Legas started slowly at Air Force. Legas was reinserted as the starter when Hillstead suffered a concussion against UConn.

RELATED: With McCae Hillstead’s Potential Return, Who Starts At Quarterback For Utah State?

After missing two games due to the injury, Hillstead returned to start against San Jose State after Anderson determined he gave the team its best opportunity to be successful.

“He did some good things,” Anderson said in the Aggies weekly press conference. “He looked like a freshman at times… I didn’t think he played great by any means. I was proud of how he responded late and allowed us to drive the ball down the field, but it’s the interception early in the game that is glaring. The number one goal is to protect the football and that’s what I need to see.”

Following The Utah State Aggies With KSL Sports

Utah State takes on the San Diego State Aztecs on Saturday, November 4 at Snapdragon Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 5 p.m. (MT).

USU 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. 

Take us with you, wherever you go.

Download the new & improved KSL Sports app from Utah’s sports leader. You can stream live radio, and video and stay up to date on all your favorite teams.

  • Utah State Aggies Scoreboard

  • Utah State Aggies Team Leaders

  • Utah State Aggies Standings

Utah State Aggies

Great-Osobor-Utah-State-Aggies-Danny-Sprinkle...

Kyle Ireland

ESPN: Former Utah State Forward Great Osobor Commits To Washington

Former Utah State forward Great Osobor followed Danny Sprinkle to Seattle by committing to Washington, according to ESPN.

15 days ago

Isaac Davis, Utah State Basketball...

Mitch Harper

Former BYU Signee Isaac Davis Flips To Utah State Basketball

Isaac Davis from Hillcrest High in Idaho will begin his college career with the Aggies.

19 days ago

Siaosi-Mariner-Michigan-Panthers-UFL...

Kyle Ireland

Panthers WR Siaosi Mariners Hauls In Touchdown Catch Against Renegades

Former Utah and USU wide receiver Siaosi Mariner hauled in a touchdown reception during Week 6 of the 2024 United Football League season.

23 days ago

Stew Morrill Court Utah State Aggies women's basketball Wesley Brooks...

Brian Preece

Utah State Basketball Bolsters Guardline With Second In-State WAC Transfer

USU attacked the transfer portal and added another prize when former Southern Utah freshman Braden Housley committed to becoming an Aggie.

27 days ago

Dee Glen Smith Spectrum...

Brian Preece

Sophomore Forward Tucker Anderson Commits To Utah State Men’s Basketball

Former McDonald's All-American nominee Tucker Anderson will be taking his basketball talents to Utah State University for 2024-25.

28 days ago

utah-state-wide-receiver-terrell-vaughn...

Chandler Holt

Utah State WR Terrell Vaughn Receives Camp Invite From Seattle Seahawks

Utah State Aggies wide receiver Terrell Vaughn received an invite to the Seattle Seahawks rookie minicamp on Tuesday.

28 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Follow @kslsports...

KSL Give-A-Thon

The KSL Sports Zone, KSL 5 TV, FM100.3, 103.5 The Arrow, and KSL NewsRadio have teamed up to raise money for the kids being served by Primary Children’s Care!

ksl-sports-newsletter...

KSL Sports

KSL Sports Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the KSL Sports newsletter. Get the latest Utah sports news delivered to your inbox.

...

KSL Sports

Jazz Notes Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the Jazz Notes newsletter. Get insider analysis, game recaps and opportunities to win tickets!

Follow @kslsports...

The Road Home Mediathon 2023

The KSL Sports Zone and KSLSports.com are proud to support the all-day Mediathon 2023 at the Road Home, an annual tradition to raise money and other essential items for the Road Home, a Homeless Shelter.

3 kids wearing real salt lake jerseys smiling...

Real Salt Lake

6 Reasons You Need to Experience a RSL Matchday

RSL Games are a great way to spend time with your family with fun activities, good food, and traditions you can only experience at the field.

High angle view of the beautiful Rose Bowl Stadium...

KSL Digital Sales

How to Prepare for the 2023 Rose Bowl

Everything you need to know to plan your 2023 Rose Bowl trip in Pasadena, California. This year, the Utes will face Penn State.

Anderson Undecided On Who Starts At Quarterback For Utah State