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Utah Football: Three areas that could make or break the Utes this season

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Wide receiver catching a pass 3_28_15

Utah football is back and I don’t know about you but I’m more than excited. With Utah facing their first opponent tonight, here are three unknowns going into this season.

Special Teams

More specifically punting. With a struggling offense in the past we have been able to rely on a weapon in Tom Hackett to consistently force opponents deep in their own territory. Unfortunately for Utah, the two-time Ray Guy Award winner Hackett has graduated and we are left wondering just where do we stand with his replacement in sophomore and fellow Aussie, Mitch Wishnowsky? From what we know so far in hints from Coach Whittingham, Wishnowsky has more physicality and leg strength than Hackett but the greatest undetermined factor is how he will do under pressure.

Wide Receivers

How different will the dynamic of Utah’s pass game be without Britain Covey and Kenneth Scott? Covey, who is currently serving as a missionary in Chile, was a standout during his freshman year with 43 receptions and 519 yards before being injured late in the season. Scott was next in line with 39 receptions for 457 yards. A notable return is Senior Tim Patrick, but what we really want to know is if he finally overcomes the leg injury that sidelined him for nearly two seasons. With a new coach at the helm in Guy Holliday and what we have seen so far in fall camp, it is possible Utah will see a lot of positive change in the throw game this year and finish much higher than 11th in the PAC-12 in passing offense.

Quarterback

This is a no brainer. It goes without saying that Troy Williams is currently the major question mark for Utah football. Beating out Tyler Huntley and Brandon Cox for the number one spot during fall camp, he has captured our undivided attention. Clearly, his ability to lead is perceived by his teammates as is evident in his nomination as a captain for the Utes. Will his hard work on field during camp pay off for the Utes? Will we see more of a passing game? Will he be able to provide the consistency Utah has missed since Brian Johnson? We will see.

While the Utes may not answer all of these questions in this first game against SUU they could set a precedent and give some hints as to what we can expect to see this season.