Senior wide receiver Zach Benjamin enters spring football with a different feeling than last season, as he knows he has a legitimate opportunity to see the field.
“Spring practice is pretty good so far,” Benjamin said. “I think I would have liked to play a little better, but I can’t complain so far, especially because I am getting more reps now.
“I am very excited and fortunate to be out here. The reps definitely mean more. That’s not to say I took anything lightly, but you definitely take it more seriously now and really try to show the coaches what you’ve got.”
Benjamin had to sit out last season due to transfer rules despite the coaching staff believing he would eventually be eligible.
“It was very frustrating, especially in the beginning of the season,” Benjamin said. “Coming in here, the coaches and I thought that I was fine.
“Midway through the season when you see your team struggling and your friends need some help and you want to help out your team, but you just can’t.”
Now that he is eligible, Benjamin will team up with Shawn Poindexter to add some much needed size to the wide receivers.
“I think in this league you see a lot of bigger corners, but you don’t see a lot of teams with two 6’5 guys on the outside,” he said.
“It is a harder thing to cover, especially when Shawn and I move as well as we do and have the ability to block or do some things smaller receivers can’t do.”
There has been some change with Arizona’s offense, but some stability as well.
“With the quarterbacks, I think you have to go in knowing that whoever is your starter is going to be the guy and whatever happens you have to make the completion,” Benjamin said. “Both of them are competing and either way you have to roll with whoever it is.
“As far as Coach Aych goes, I am a big fan of him so far. He is still getting settled in, but the whole receiver crew and him have clicked so far.
“I think Dews and him are similar in coaching styles because they are both on you and strict guys. They both want us to be aggressive and have fun.”
If everything goes right on offense, Benjamin believes that Arizona will have one of the better units in the conference, if not the country.
“The offense can be very good,” he said. “You see the talent we have. There are certain games where we clicked like against Washington and Hawaii.
“We have guys like Brandon Dawkins and J.J. Taylor back with the majority of receivers. It wasn’t that it was a high bar last year, but not having a great season last year, especially with passing, there is so much expectation and opportunity this year.”