Utah State football: Aggies open up fall camp with short but effective practice

Jeff Hunter

USU wide receiver Braelon Roberts hauls in a wide-open touchdown pass as the Aggie defense looks on during Friday afternoon’s practice in Logan.

LOGAN – One day into fall camp, the 2017 Aggie football team is already making history.

Originally slated to practice in helmets and shorts from 2:10 to 4:15 p.m. Friday, USU head coach Matt Wells brought the Aggies’ inaugural practice session to close just before 4 p.m.

“In 120 years of Utah State football, this was the shortest practice,” Wells proclaimed afterwards.

When asked why, Wells explained, “Just because of the pace that we’re going, and the work that we did late in the summer, I really think it’s got to be cumulative in effect. You can’t just keep adding on and adding on.

“We also studied a lot of our soft-tissue injuries, and I call them issues, and most of them have happened in the first three days of practice the past few Augusts. So, we’ll try and avoid that, too.”

Now heading into his fifth season as the head coach at his alma mater, Wells ran the show as 103 Aggies dressed for action on a hot and breezy afternoon in Cache Valley. Noticeably absent was last year’s leading receiver Ron’quavian Tarver, who will miss the team’s first two practices in order to attend a funeral in Florida.

“(Quarterback-turned-tight end) Damion Hobbs also sat out today while dealing with some hamstring tightness from the last week or two,” Wells added. “And we also two or three kids that we’re waiting on transcripts to get finalized from an academic standpoint.”

However, Wells was excited about the return of a number of Aggies, most notably sophomore Dax Raymond. The tight end out of Timpview High School had to have back surgery after suffering an injury during the first day of training camp last August.

“It’s great to have Dax back,” Wells said with a big smile. “And also (linebacker) Mason Tobeck and (offensive lineman) Jarom Ioane. Those are three guys…

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