Ravell Call, Deseret News
Utah Utes quarterback Tyler Huntley passes towards San Jose State all through NCAA soccer performed in Salt Lake City on Saturday, Sept. 16, 2017.
SALT LAKE CITY — Darren Carrington II used to be just slightly hesitant when he used to be requested after Saturday night time’s victory if Utah’s younger quarterback, Tyler Huntley, reminded him of any individual.
“He reminds me of a quarterback I had in the past, a young one,” he mentioned.
And who would possibly that quarterback be?
None rather than his former teammate at Oregon, Marcus Mariota, who gained the Heisman Trophy in 2014 when Carrington used to be certainly one of his most sensible receivers.
“He’s not up there yet, but he reminds me of Marcus a lot, how he can throw off the run and throw off his back foot 70 yards and make people miss,” Carrington mentioned. “He’s just a ballplayer.”
Carrington performed for three years at Oregon and all through his freshman season, Mariota’s Heisman-winning season, he used to be 2nd at the workforce with 37 receptions for 704 yards and 4 touchdowns.
Already this yr, Carrington has stuck 4 landing passes from Huntley and with 26 catches for 409 yards, he’s a few of the NCAA leaders. Carrington is tied for 2nd within the country in receiving yards, tied with receiving yards in line with recreation (136.three) and tied for 5th in each receptions in line with recreation (eight.7) and receiving touchdowns.
“It’s huge and it gives Tyler a target,” mentioned Utah trainer Kyle Whittingham of the Huntley-Carrington connection. “I love to say we’ve got excellent receivers however with Darren and Tyler appear to have nice chemistry and accept as true with.”
Whittingham wasn’t afraid to echo Carrington’s comparability of Huntley to Mariota when requested.
“They’re certainly comparable in their athleticism and the way they are a true dual threat,” he mentioned. “There are a lot of similarities in their style of play. Marcus was very accurate and so is Tyler. That’s a pretty favorable comparison because Marcus Mariota was one of the first players taken in the draft that speaks to what Tyler’s shown so far. It’s still early in Tyler’s career and he’s got a lot of football left but what we’ve seen so far is very positive.”
As for Huntley, he used to be flattered to be compared to a up to date Heisman Trophy winner.
“That’s a large number of love from Carrington,” he said. “I don’t need to take that reward however that’s wonderful that he compared me to Mariota and I just hope I reside up to it.”
If you evaluate Mariota’s 2nd season (he redshirted as a freshman) with Huntley’s (he performed a handful of snaps ultimate yr as a freshman), Huntley has related numbers and is in truth higher, average-wise.
Huntley is averaging 291 passing yards in line with recreation and 71 speeding thus far, whilst Mariota averaged 206 yards passing and 58 yards speeding in his first season because the Ducks’ signal-caller. Huntley additionally has a greater passing proportion at 72.1 p.c, whilst Mariota used to be 68.three p.c in his first season and 66.eight for his occupation.
Huntley does have a couple if interceptions this yr and can want to steer clear of them as Pac-12 play starts, one thing that Mariota used to be outstanding at. Mariota handiest had six interceptions as a freshman and just 4 each and every of the following two years, 14 for his occupation.
It’s a stretch to say whether or not Huntley might be as excellent as Mariota by means of his 3rd season as a starter, however the Utes are fascinated with his long run.
“He’s an amazing athlete, he’s were given an excellent arm, he’s correct and he’s a excellent decision-maker with over 70 p.c completions,” mentioned Whittingham. “If we can keep that trend we’re going to have a very successful year.”