Stout Evaluates BYU's First Scrimmage

BYU linebacker Zac Stout has been hampered by a hamstring injury and should be expected back in practice next week. He wasn’t playing in today’s scrimmage at LaVell Edwards Stadium, but the starting linebacker was on hand to watch the younger charges take the field to make a statement of their own. He shared his thoughts on today’s overall performance.

Today’s scrimmage was about what was to be expected. The defense was able to go out and hit someone, and the offense was able to go out and execute. Both sides saw a lot of new faces playing major roles in an effort to get them some reps for evaluation. Buck linebacker Zac Stout said the defense wanted to make a statement.

“We really just went in there with the mindset of stopping the run and be physical,” said Stout. “One thing we wanted to do today was get some new guys some looks to see how they perform in this environment.”

Stopping the run is always the first priority of any defense to force the offense into becoming one dimensional. Adam Hine had a very good day scampering through the defense and Paul Lasike was also productive.

“We have some work to do,” said Stout. “For the most part I feel like we played physical and gave a lot of effort. We’re moving forward but we still have to kinks to work out.”

The offense did reach pay dirt a few times, but given today’s defensive objects Stout feels his side did fairly well despite many of the starters being out. He assessed the results of today’s defensive goals.

“It was pretty good,” Stout said. “Overall it was a good performance but we have some work to do, so I was say today’s overall performance was pretty good. Everyone is still fighting for a starting spot and nothing is solidified yet, so today was a good chance to get some of those news guys in to see what they could do. Overall I would say we saw some progress today.”

The offense found success through the air. Both Christian Stewart and Taysom Hill connected with targets downfield. The secondary was also rotating in and out a lot with many of the starters seeing little to no playing time. Still there was success from the Cougar secondary in what was a see-saw battle in the passing game.

“The passing game from our offense was great today,” Stout said. “They made some plays on us and those came about through some mental errors, being young, and by guys not being exactly where they need to be. For the most part our secondary has been great throughout all of fall camp.”

Today’s scrimmage at LaVell Edwards Stadium saw a lot of rotation at the linebacker positions. Generally at the end of four downs a new set of linebackers would come in if the first set wasn’t able to stop the offense.

“We’re going to need everybody,” Stout said. “I mean, as you saw out here we would go four and then rotate. To be able to do that hopefully everybody will be up to speed to where we don’t miss a beat if and when we do rotate.”

It was very much the same situation for the defensive line. After the initial set of downs was completed, the unit that took the field first would be replaced by a new one as the drive continued onward.

“I think the main reason is because the way the game is played now,” said Stout. “We want fresh bodies in there all the time, and now we have the depth and the talent to do things like that.”

Despite some setbacks and successes during today’s open scrimmage, Stout feels in the end the 2014 BYU defense will be very good. The fact that many of the younger players are getting a ton of reps will bode well for quality depth as the season wears on.

“I think this defense is going to be great,” Stout said. “I really do. I think we’re going to be great this year. Like I said we’ve still got some things to iron out, but for the most part we’re getting things down. I think we’re going to be a really good defense.”

Christian Stewart

On the other side of the ball, backup quarterback Christian Stewart talked about his fall camp success throwing the ball with more zip and accuracy. He gives insight into what he did to improve his throwing motion and about the offensive performance on the day. To listen to Stewart click the link below.

Stewart Audio

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