ROBB AKEY: Utah State game prep

The Vandals (1-2, 0-0 WAC) take on Utah State (0-3, 0-0) this week in Logan, UT in the WAC season opener for both programs. Coach Akey addressed WAC media Monday and discussed Idaho's preparation for the Aggies.

About the game at Utah State on Saturday.
RA: "Well, we're fired up to be getting conference play started. I'm very anxious to play another game because we really only played about half of a game last week. We're looking forward to that opportunity. We're playing it on the road, so we have an opportunity to go get this thing started. Utah State, I know, has played three good football teams. I know they're hungry, and we're anxious to get things rolling."

Regarding players returning from prior injuries.
RA: "Big Mike Iupati played Saturday, and his shoulder seems to have responded well. So, I anticipate his role will grow. Tyrone Novikoff [offensive tackle] is back. So yeah, we're getting some healthier bodies back in there. I hope that will lead to us protecting the quarterback a little bit better."

About Idaho and Utah State defenses giving up too may yards.
RA: "Yeah. I think that's what we need to get fixed with our defense. I know that…being able to get ourselves off the field and not "start down." Go back to the Western Michigan game where we had the opportunity. It was 14-14 and we've got a great drive stop opportunity that's going to force the ball to be punted, third down and long and we've got a guy who goes and makes a tremendous play on the ball. But, it was maybe a little bit too close and we ended up getting a pass interference called. That kept the drive alive. But, we still had an opportunity to stop it and make them hit a field goal. So yeah, we need to get ourselves off the field a little bit sooner. We're gonna put 11 guys on the field, 11 guys that need to be accountable. Each guy needs to be accountable for each other, and I think we need to tighten that up a little bit. Certainly us getting a little better pressure on the quarterback is going to help. That's going to help coverage a little bit also."

About Nathan Enderle's confidence and development.
RA: "I still see him making good decisions. I see him taking better command of things, and he does some very smart things in the way that he's playing. We just need to make sure that all of us around him are helping him, and every single position on this team has got things that it needs to consistently perform better, and that's important right now."

On Nathan Enderle's development since he started playing for the Vandals. RA: "Well, I think the way that he's making decisions in throwing, that he's taken better command of our offense. That's where the biggest growth has been. I think the fact that he's playing his second season in college football - some of those learning things - we've got some of those growing pains a little bit behind him right now. He can continue to get better, but I like the growth that he's made. He's throwing the ball well. He's also made himself a more mobile player. We need to keep growing up."

Whether the Vandal offense is fully installed or is the more to come. RA: "Oh, I think we'll continue to grow with our offense. I think that he's (Nathan Enderle) very capable of executing what we want to deal with. We've gotta make sure that all 11 guys on the field are able to operate full speed and just don't throw too much at them at one point in time. I think our offense is always going to continue to grow, and there'll be things that we'll use to attack each week's opponent that'll tweak that plan a little bit."

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