Scouting The Utah State Offense

Utah State produced the nation's 12th best offense last season in terms of yards per game. The Aggies were good for 29.1 points and 439.3 yards per game in 2009. On averaged they gained 256.8 yards per game through the air and 192.6 yards on the ground with their balanced attack. However, that was last year and this in now. Even though Utah State returns a legitimate dual-threat quarterback from `09 there are two key components that they'll need to replace to maintain or increase productivity from last season.

Utah State Offense

WR

Mikhail Morgan

         

LT

Spencer Johnson

LG

Eric Shoultz

C

Tyler Larson

RG

Philip Gapelu

RT

Tanner Richins

TE

Kellen Bartlet

          

WR

Austin Alder

 

WR

Eric Moats

QB

Diondre Borel

RB

Michael Smith

 

The Utah State offensive attack centers around quarterback Diondre Borel who is learning to trust his arm more than his legs. Last season he passed for 2,885 yards, 17 touchdowns and just 4 interceptions. He also rushed for 458 yards and 6 scores.

One of the stuggles facing Borel is the absence of his two leading receivers from last year. Receiver Stanley Morrison and running back Robert Turbin are both out with injury. Eric Moats was third on the team in receptions with 27 catches for 400 yards and a score and the Aggies are hoping for big things from JUCO transfer Austin Alder.

Running back is a bit of an issue as well. Utah State was hoping for big things from Turbin who rushed for 1,296 yards (6.3 YPC) and 13 touchdowns last season. His loss due to a torn ACL was more than significant. Hoping to fill Turbin's shoes is Michael Smith who only had 46 carries last year but also averaged 6.3 yards per carry. Smith turned his carries into 290 yards and 4 touchdowns.

Regardless of personnel the Aggies are going to do two things on Saturday. First, they're going to test Oklahoma's secondary. With two new corners and a new full-time starter at strong safety that's where they'll start. Look for the Aggies to run some four-receiver sets to test the knowledge and ability of the new defense backs.

The second thing that the Utah State offense is going to do is test the containment of Oklahoma's defensive ends. With questions about Frank Alexander's status, Borel is going to be looking for running lanes as well as scrambling out of the pocket to make a throw on the run. He's proven that he's quick and accurate and so the Sooners must play assignment defensive football to eliminate his effectiveness.

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