Provo • Former Spanish Fork High star Richard Wilson has had his share of ups and downs in his career at BYU, but the sophomore seems to finally have found a spot where he can flourish.
It's at tight end, the position he was originally recruited to play when he picked BYU over offers from some of the top programs in the country, including LSU.
"Yes, I will definitely be a tight end the rest of my career," he said Tuesday. "I got moved to linebacker for depth reasons, and it ended up not working out. I feel more comfortable in the offense. I feel like that's where I can help the team the most, because I understand the offensive mentality better. I would rather score touchdowns than get sacks."
Wilson is having a phenomenal preseason camp, pushing fellow sophomores Devin Mahina and Austin Holt for playing time. He's every bit the pass-catcher, but isn't as big and physical as the two guys ahead of him on the depth chart and is not perceived to be a good blocker.
He also got behind because he missed spring ball to recuperate from shoulder surgery.
"I think it has been good for me to get some reps with the ones, and be able to make some plays when the ball is thrown my way," he said. "I think all three of us are great athletes, and we are going to help this offense so much this year."
Wilson said new tight ends coach Lance Reynolds has "revitalized" the position, and promises much more production there than last year.
Mees, if you please
BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall said former Pine View High star Carter Mees has made great strides in camp and is now "neck and neck" with Jray Galea'i to be the backup behind Daniel Sorensen at Kat (strong) safety.
"The good news is we will have a chance to play quite a bit of nickel, maybe dime [and get the backup on the field], and so that's good," he said.
Freshman defensive lineman Stehli Reden is now a tight end, but will likely redshirt prior to his church mission. … Freshman TE Colby Jorgensen, from Timpview High, had surgery on his shoulder Wednesday and is out for the season. … Several players switched numbers after receiving special teams assignments. Most notably, DB Joe Sampson is now 5, WR Dalin Tollestrup is now 17, RB Ryan Folsom is now 30 and DL Mike Muehlmann is now 95.
What we learned • With both starting units absent some starters, the defense again owned the day against the offense, forcing quarterback Jake Heaps into a 1-for-5 day and sacking Riley Nelson twice.
Who was hot • With the starters sidelined, backup corners Robbie Buckner and Joe Sampson showed they are capable if pressed into service early in the season.
Who was sidelined • Projected starting cornerbacks Corby Eason and Preston Hadley were given the day off to heal up from various bumps and bruises.