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BYU Football: All Eyes Are On QB Jaren Hall As Cougars Open Preseason Camp




BYU quarterback Jaren Hall says he has no goals or checklists for himself in what will almost certainly be his last season in Cougar Blue before pursuing his dream of playing in the National Football League.

Are expectations for the team as a whole? That’s another story.

I believe the sky is the limit, Hall said Thursday after BYU recorded its first preseason training camp training camp of 2022. We have the potential to have a really good season as a team.

With more personality and enthusiasm than perhaps ever in his five years in Provo, a relaxed, confident Hall made the rounds with reporters in the 95-degree heat at the outdoor training facility, joking about everything from his golf game to teaching coach and recently fourth. father Kalani Sitake tips about childcare, until his decision to practically wear a long-sleeved shirt to hide his muscular arms.

I believe the sky is the limit. We have the potential to have a really good season as a team. BYU quarterback Jaren Hall

Hall is of course not only the undisputed starting quarterback in 2022, he is also the face of the program, the leader and the alpha dog among the players. Last August, when he was battling for the starter with four-star prospect Jacob Conover and Baylor Romney, he was not as relaxed and easygoing as Thursday.

This is his team, and he knows it, even if he’s too humble and self-deprecating to say it outright.

Just another year of experience under my belt, that’s it, he said, when asked if camp is different this year, knowing he’s the guy. Just a little more confidence. The game is a bit slower. I’m a little more knowledgeable. I’m just trying to keep things simple, as always.

Praised for how good the passing game looked in the 20 or so minutes of practice that the media got to watch Thursday, Hall gave the credit to others.

Our O-line (striking), he said. And how clean the bag is, how well we ran the ball today. We don’t even have pads on, but they’re moving guys. It’s no secret (the O-line) is the strength of our team, as always.

In fact, you could argue that Hall is the strength of the team, having gone 8-2 as a starter in the 10 games he played last season, throwing 2,583 yards and 20 touchdowns with just five interceptions. Hes emerged as an NFL draft prospect, another reason why this season will almost certainly be his last, even if he’s technically still eligible for two more years.

Hall said he and top-three receivers Puka Nacua, Gunner Romney and Keanu Hill are already in sync, after spending countless hours off-season improving that chemistry, in addition to what they accomplished last year. Now it is important to align other receivers such as Kody Epps, Chase Roberts, Terence Fall and Brayden Cosper.


BYU starting quarterback Jaren Hall scrambles into jersey, shorts and helmet during the first practice session of training camp Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022 in Provo.

Springball always feels a little smoother right out of the gate, because it’s only two months (post-season), he said. But then fall camp is four, four-and-a-half months away from Spring Ball, so it’s a much longer break. Just find your sync with recipients (is a priority). Today, with all the experienced guys we have, everyone was where they needed to be. Now it’s a matter of doing everything a little faster, just syncing everything.

Sitake said Hall looks a lot more comfortable this year because he focused entirely on improving offense and not on winning a quarterback derby. He said offensive coordinator Aaron Roderick did a masterful job bringing Hall along, just like Roderick did with Zach Wilson when he was the QBs coach and Jeff Grimes the OC in 2019 and 2020.

I gave (Roderick) the chance to just teach him, and bring out the standards he has for him, and the expectations he had of him to achieve this summer, Sitake said. And he did. We’ll see what happens in the fall camp. On Day 1, Jaren did great, as did the other quarterbacks when they were on the field.

Romney said he has worked with Hall all through the off-season, almost from the day he decided to return for one final season. Training camp will be used to hone specific game concepts and what will work against specific defenses, Romney said.

Has Hall added anything new to his repertoire?

I mean no. It’s Years. We know what to expect from him. He’s a baller, Romney said. It’s fun to watch him tear apart another defense and take on some DBs with the 11-on-11 (sessions). I’m excited to see him play in a full match again.

Hall said he may have gained five pounds in the off-season and is feeling really good with where he is now physically after missing the bowling match with an ankle injury.

Obviously, he knows he needs to take many precautions to stay healthy this season, having failed to finish the 2019 and 2021 seasons due to concussions in 2019 and the aforementioned in 2021. He sat out the entire 2020 season when Wilson ascended to fame with a hip injury.

I just need to get the ball out a lot faster and understand what’s going on, Hall said. You can prepare your body, eat well and sleep well. But at the end of the day, if you don’t know what’s going on, you can’t protect yourself, so you have to be locked in mentally and know the game better than anyone.




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