Of the 95 players that were donning helmets, practice jerseys and shorts Tuesday, 25 will be seniors, 25 will be juniors, 20 will sophomores and 25 are freshmen.
“It was a good first day. There is plenty of juice and energy around here, and those are the things that our staff and players have and feed off of,” said Wells. “We were flying around and I really liked the way a lot of the defensive backs broke-up balls.
“We’re going to really, really sweat the small details this spring and we’re going to coach the heck out of those. Not just what you’re doing, but how you’re doing it and the demeanor that you do it in. We are going to try and take things to another level and coach a lot more of the finer details of techniques and different things kids can do.”
Some highlights from Tuesday’s practice included interceptions by senior cornerback Devonta Glover-Wright and redshirt freshman linebacker Nick Vigil.
“Nick and Zach Vigil bring an intensity and toughness with everything they do,” Wells said. “Both are in-state kids with a high care-factor and they will both be really good players for us.”
In all, Utah State returns 18 starters (O-8, D-7, S-3) and 49 letterwinners (O-23, D-22, S-4) from last year's 11-2 Western Athletic Conference and Famous Idaho Potato Bowl Championship team that ended the year ranked 16th in the final Associated Press Poll and 22nd in the final Bowl Championship Series Standings.
Among those returning for Utah State include 10 players who earned various all-WAC accolades a year ago as senior linebacker Jake Doughty, sophomore linebacker Kyler Fackrell, junior quarterback Chuckie Keeton, senior offensive center Tyler Larsen and senior offensive tackle Eric Schultz were all named to the first-team, while senior cornerback Nevin Lawson, senior offensive guard Jamie Markosian, sophomore defensive tackle Jordan Nielsen and junior linebacker Zach Vigil were all named to the second-team, and senior defensive tackle Connor Williams was named to the honorable mention team.
Utah State will continue with spring practice on Wednesday morning, before practicing in the afternoon on Thursday, as players will wear pads for the first time. All practices are open to the public, with morning practices scheduled from 6:15 to 8:15 a.m. at the Stan Laub Indoor Football Complex. Afternoon practices are scheduled from 3:15 to 5:15 p.m. at Merlin Olsen Field at Romney Stadium. All practice days, times and locations are subject to change.
Over the next four weeks, the Aggies will participate in 15 spring practice sessions, culminating in the annual Blue vs. White Spring Game, presented by Orbit Irrigation Products, on Saturday, April 20 on Merlin Olsen Field at Romney Stadium at 2 p.m.