This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Logan • McKade Brady entered Utah State as an enigma, a curiosity.
Sure, as a safety, Brady had been a first team all-state performer at Sky View High. Sure, he had a football background, the hunger to hit and an appetite for playing the game.
But when Brady was at BYU, he was a track runner and not a football player. He transferred to Utah State because he had the itch, but how much he could contribute to Gary Andersen's defensive backfield was very much in question.
"Nobody knew anything, really," USU safeties coach Bill Busch said. "We knew that he could run, and that was about it."
Two years, some interceptions, more pass break-ups and a bunch of tackles later, Brady is an important part of what Utah State does defensively. When the season starts against Southern Utah in August, Brady will be one of USU's defensive captains.
Through four weeks of spring football practice, it's obvious that the defense works best with Brady on the field. He can play both safety positions. He runs like a cornerback, and he's become more physical as time has passed.
Brady has evolved into a leader, and he's one of the guys who will be counted on to fill the emotional void vacated by Bobby Wagner's graduation.
"I know that I have big shoes to fill," Brady said. "I want to become a vocal leader and the guy that everyone looks to in crunch time. I want to do my best to be worthy of everyone's trust."
Brady started at free safety last season, and has been learning the other safety position in spring practice. His versatility is a strength, as he can play every position in the defensive backfield.
Practice on Tuesday morning went heavy on situational scrimmaging. A highlight was the offense driving 70 yards for touchdowns on consecutive possessions in the two-minute scenario.
"It was a highlight for the offense, but certainly not the defense," Andersen said. "We have to do better in that situation."
Andersen told The Tribune that linebackers coach Kevin Clune would be a good fit for Weber State's sudden job opening.
He was quick to say he didn't know whether or not Clune would be considered for the job, which opened when John L. Smith went to Arkansas.
"He's a lot like me when I was at Utah," Andersen said. "He's a great coach."
Blue-White Spring Game