OGDEN — Who’s the quarterback?
It’s a question nobody has the answer to yet at Weber State (and one coaches would probably like to stop hearing). Aside from the dynamic Rashid Shaheed, the Wildcats are also short on experience from pass-catchers.
But with a veteran offensive line, there’s one group ready to carry the rock and grind up yards.
“We need to carry the load every time, no matter what year it is or who’s playing,” running backs coach Quinton Ganther said. “You’ve got to always carry the load, that’s what we do as running backs.”
Seniors Treshawn Garrett and Brady May will play a primary role in that effort. Garrett, a 5-foot-11 running back from Palmdale, California, returns after rushing for 698 yards last season, including a 98-yard touchdown.
“I know going into the season that they’re going to rely on me a lot and I have to be ready. And I am ready,” Garrett said.
Ganther relies on Garrett to lead the group.
“He brings consistency and brings veteran leadership to where he’s a guy that any time he’s on the field, I trust him,” Ganther said. “As a coach, that’s all you want from a player is that he can be accountable and trustworthy. He knows what he’s doing and I can trust him.”
May will plow the road and grab a few carries himself at fullback.
“Having that guy lead you is something else. A big guy like that, I’m very confident back there seeing him lead block when we have a run play called,” Garrett said about May.
May had eight carries for 20 yards last season, in addition to his prolific special-teams play, and caught 10 passes for 108 yards out of the backfield. He may take on a larger role in offensive coordinator Dave Schramm’s offense.
“Anytime you have a player of Brady’s caliber, you want to find a way to put him on the field. He’s one of our team leaders,” Ganther said. “You want to go to war with those guys, you want guys who will give you their all and he’s one of those guys.”
Garrett isn’t the only experienced talent in the backfield. Last season, Kevin Smith netted 562 rushing yards and David Jones added 387. Those two and Garrett all averaged at least 5.3 yards per carry.
The balanced attack wasn’t necessarily planned, Ganther said, but was created by the younger players earning playing time, something that could happen again this season. “They make their own depth chart,” he said.
Smith has been out of fall camp with a leg injury and may take some time to return, but Garrett is still high on his teammates as Cameron Hansen, Cameron Smith and Josh Davis have played a lot of reps in camp, along with Clay Moss at fullback.
“I truly believe we can be the best back group in the nation,” he said. “I think Coach Q (Ganther) does a good job teaching us and recruiting and getting us to where we need to be.”
Schramm’s offense will bring a new look all over the field, including in the run game. Ganther said the group isn’t quite up to standard yet but the offense is coming along.
“We have a few more plays, a few different steps but nothing too complicated that we can’t do,” Garrett said. “I like the plays (Schramm) added, it puts something different in our offense ... and I like it.”
Fall camp continues through Aug. 23 before game week arrives ahead of the Aug. 30 opener at Utah.