Campus Scoop with Mike Yam at Utah
After visiting the Pacific Northwest, Mike Yam headed to the mountains to pay a visit to the Utah Utes. Alongside fellow analysts Anthony Herron and Yogi Roth, Yam earned his redemption song by a good field goal kick after some missed punts at last year's camp. See below for some highlights from his stop in Salt Lake City.
What was it like to finally be redeemed?
“This morning I woke up to a Tweet from the Utah football twitter handle that said they had something in store for us. Immediately, I was concerned because of the debacle last year when I tried to field a punt from the jug machine (which by the way, it isn’t easy, and I still don’t know if I could do it to this day). So I had a little anxiety heading into practice today. They ended up telling me that we were trying to kick a field goal. That didn’t make me feel comfortable because I don’t think I’ve kicked a field goal in the last decade. We practiced, and Coach Roth and Coach Herron helped prepare me. They had to work on their snap and their delivery. The snap was great; Yogi did yeoman’s work, and we were able to put it through the uprights. It was a good feeling—being a winner is a good feeling.”
What was your impression of Devontae Booker?
“Devontae Booker’s story is incredible because he was a kid who had academic issues and now is an Academic All-American. I think that portion of his story is incredible, but also the fact that last year, he was battling for a starting job, didn’t see a ton of action in those first few games and then still was able to come close to leading the conference in rushing yards last year. Now he’s on the short list for a Heisman. Coach Kyle Whittingham made it a point to say that he started the “Booker for Heisman” conversation. It speaks volumes to how confident he is in Booker, and I would also say he is one of the nicer kids you’ll meet in the conference. For me, that was one of the most special interviews I’ll remember from the tour.”
Do you have any takeaways that aren’t related to football?
“Social media: I can’t get over how involved the community is in supporting the team. Since we got here, I woke up this morning and there were already tweets between some of the fans.”
“Facilities: We have the opportunity during the training camp tour to see all of the facilities in the conference. Everyone will point to Oregon and the flashiness of their facilities and rightfully so. I make the argument that Utah’s backdrop and their facilities are close to Oregon’s, if not better. Their weight room is as good as anyone’s in the conference. I think that’s a huge tool. It shows a real commitment Utah has to its football program.”
Next stop: Colorado. To catch up on all of Yam’s posts, check out the Pac-12 Networks Insider Blog
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