Three Utah players were available today for interview after head coach Kyle Whittingham’s press conference: quarterback Troy Williams, defensive end Hunter Dimick, and tight end Evan Moeai. Block U caught up with all three players to get their thoughts on the rivalry game coming up this week against BYU and the previous game against Southern Utah.
Williams thought he played "okay" against Southern Utah, but there are certainly areas where he needs to improve. He said he needs to relax during the game, especially during the rivalry game. He "feel[s] the offense has a lot of potential." He has confidence in his teammates and feels comfortable with other players on the offense.
He did not grow up with this rivalry and did not know a ton about it before coming to Utah (he said he is "more in tune with the USC-UCLA rivalry"). He said he did not know that the state chooses if they are red or blue.
Dimick had a very interesting reason for Utah not playing as tough as they usually do in the game against Southern Utah: the players did not know the playbook well enough. He as a team leader and team captain said he will be more vocal in practice to make sure guys know the playbook and will call out mistakes when they happen.
Dimick grew up a Utah fan. He said his dad and grandparents were all Utah fans (and his mom’s side is now). Dimick thinks "all of the coaches are fired up" to play against BYU. The five game winning streak does not factor into how the players prepare (though it is nice to say he has never lost to them). Dimick said, "I’m glad this game is back in the regular season." Dimick’s first memory of the rivalry was the 2006 game where Utah lost on the last play when BYU quarterback John Beck found tight end Jonny Harline in the end zone for the game winning 11-yard touchdown.
Moeai played his high school football in the shadow of BYU at Provo (Utah) Mountain View High School. He said preparing for BYU is a bit like preparing for Michigan last year because both teams have new coaching staffs. Moeai said that the offensive players have not reviewed film of games when BYU head coach Kalani Sitake was at Utah.
Make sure to listen to each interview to hear everything the players had to say.