Looking at the Utah special teams heading into fall camp

The Utes should roll out one of the top special teams units again this fall

By Steve Bartle

The Candidates

Kicker

Andy Phillips

A returning captain, Lou Groza Award semifinalist, and two time All-Pac 12 selection, Andy Phillips is as sure a thing as his kicks. He currently boasts an 84.0 career field goal percentage (63-of-75), which ranks third all-time at Utah. He is often mistaken as a linebacker, Andy has slimmed down some in hopes improving his kicking prowess. He has a chance at the NFL if he does just that. The most important thing for Andy and Utah, will be his health, Andy has to stay healthy this fall.

 

Long Snapper

Chase Dominguez

The unsung hero of the specialist’s group, Chase has been Utah’s most steady and consistent performer since he arrived on campus. The long snapper is a position that doesn’t get talked about unless something goes wrong, and very few things have gone wrong with Chase.

 

Punter

Mitch Wishnowsky

Another Aussie style punter, Mitch has the unenviable task of replacing one of the greatest players to step on the field at RES. A daunting task, Mitch showed off his own punting skills this past spring, often booming punts high and far. If we’re using golf terms, Hackett was a chip-shot wizard, whereas Wishnowsky can grip it and rip it. Where Mitch struggled adjusting was place holding for Andy, it will be interesting to see if he improves there.

 

Punt Returner

Boobie Hobbs

Having returned a few of them last year, one of which was one of the most memorable plays in all of college football last year, Boobie looks to lock up the spot this fall. One of the more shifty players, his athleticism bodes well for the position. One thing he has to be better at is ball security.

 

Justin Thomas

A Sr this year, Thomas hasn’t fielded punts in a game yet in his career but did very well in high school. He may look to finish his career with a splash and show off his returning ability. Similar to Boobie, Thomas’ athleticism is a good fit for punt returner.

 

Kick Returner

Cory Butler-Byrd

CBB had one of the highlights of the year with his kickoff return against Fresno St. last year. This should be a pretty easy spot for him to lock up again this year. He has all the athleticism in the world to succeed here.

 

Tavaris Williams

A newer name to the returners depth chart, Tavaris has the necessary athleticism and could be a good returner as well.

 

Kyle Fulks

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I wouldn’t be surprised to see Fulks work his way into a kick returner. He is one of, if not the fastest players on the team. He needs every opportunity to get the ball in his hands.

Projected Depth Chart

Kicker

Andy Phillips

 

Punter

Mitch Wishnowsky

 

Long Snapper

Chase Dominguez

 

Punt Returner

Boobie Hobbs

 

Kick Returners

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Cory Butler-Byrd and Kyle Fulks


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