England to play on defense for BYU

Garrett England did it all for Utah's Skyline High School. He played on offense, defense and special teams. He'll leave to serve a two-year LDS mission following graduation, but when he returns and joins BYU, it will be the defensive side of the ball that he'll call home.

The goal this year for the Skyline Eagles was to make it to the playoffs. Head coach Stephen Marlowe was able to accomplish that goal with the help of some talented players, such as BYU commit Garrett England.

"It's been a great experience and I have great teammates here and great coaches," England said. "I really got close with everybody and it's a great brotherhood over there. The overall experience over there was great and I love Skyline.

"Personally, I think I did pretty good. We did make it to the playoffs but we lost to Bountiful, so that was tough, obviously. We had the goal to make the playoffs this year and we did do that even though we lost in the first round of the playoffs."

England played wide receiver, but Skyline runs the triple option, making it tough for any receiver to hone his skills. Coach Marlowe moved him to running back, however, where he was part of Skyline's rushing attack.

"I played running back a lot this year because I don't get the ball that much as a receiver," said England. "They still managed to get me the pass as a receiver once in a while though. We have the A-back and the B-back and they're kind of the same thing. I played both of those running back positions this year."

The 6-foot-4-inch, 190-pound England feels he did well as a running back. On the season he carried the ball 58 times for 434 yards, averaging 7.48 yards per carry. He also rushed for four touchdowns.

"I played good this year as a running back and I've played running back in little league, so it wasn't anything new to me this year," England said. "It really came natural to me. It was fun …"

On the season he also caught 25 passes for 257 yards, averaging 10.28 yard per catch, and scored an additional five touchdowns through the air.

"Yeah, I caught some passes as well and did pretty good when I got the opportunity to catch the ball," England said.

On the defensive side of the ball, England recorded 43 tackles as a safety. He also returned punts, fielding nine for 159 yards. His longest was a 68-yarder.

England was going to greshirt his first year at BYU before then leaving to serve an LDS mission. However, now that the LDS Church has lowered the mission age to 18, he plans on leaving for his mission directly out of high school.

When he returns home, England expects to play defense for the Cougars.

"When I get home I most likely won't play wide receiver," England said. "I'll play defense and they recruited me as a safety. Some of the articles that I've read said that I'll play wide receiver. The coaches said there are not a lot of guys with my height who have my kind of range. They said they're really excited to have me back there at safety and feel that I can contribute a lot. I'm excited about that obviously."

BYU's defense is ranked among the best this year. England said it's an honor to be considered worthy of playing defense for the Cougars.

"I don't know if I'm quite deserving of such an honor, but I guess they see it in me. It just means that I have to live up to that honor and work as hard as I can to be worthy of playing on that defense. I can't wait to play under Coach Mendenhall and Coach Howell and, like I said, it's an honor to be considered by them as someone who is good enough to play on a defense like that."

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