Boise State redshirt freshman Cory Young was the best tailback on the field in the Spring Game but that won’t mean much when fall camp opens Aug. 6.
Sophomore Jeremy McNichols, the front-runner for the starting job; senior Jack Fields; and Stanford transfer Kelsey Young, Cory’s brother; weren’t on the field that day.
Those four players plus junior Devan Demas, the fastest player on the team — and promising sophomore Ryan Wolpin will compete to replace Jay Ajayi in fall camp.
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“It’s going to heat up a lot more,” Cory Young said Wednesday. “It’s just motivating me even more to work even harder, get in the playbook and get ready for fall camp.”
Young carried 11 times for 68 yards and a touchdown in the Spring Game in April. Demas was second with 19 yards.
The scrimmage capped a strong spring for Young.
“I believe my redshirt year helped me a lot,” he said. “I grew up a lot. The Spring Game just helped me clarify that I can do this and that I can be a contributor to this team.”
I’ll have a story on the Young brothers in Thursday’s newspaper. Here are some highlights from the interviews:
• On having his older brother try to take his job: “It’s football. It could have been another recruit coming in. Yeah, it’s my brother, but it’s the same competition.”
• On showing his older brother the ropes in Boise: “I’m not going to lie. It was a good feeling. I was kind of the big brother for the first time.”
• On Kelsey: “He’s very fast. He’s very strong. And he can make a move on you and get outside very fast. He’s an extremely hard worker. I feed off that. I want to work just as hard. He’s always been my inspiration growing up. That’s the reason I play football, because of him.”
• On joining the varsity team as a high school freshman (Kelsey was a senior): “Everyone knew me as Kelsey’s little brother. It was just cool to see why he was so great and see how he worked in high school and how hard he was working.”
• On his family’s reaction to the brothers playing together: “My family loves it. They’re going to get split jerseys with both our names on it and numbers.”
• He arrived about three weeks ago. He decided to transfer after Stanford’s season ended, looking for a chance to showcase his game more. He was the Cardinal’s second-leading rusher last year. He finished his computer science degree early to transfer. “It was a lot of sleepless nights and some hard times, but I got through it,” he said of the schoolwork.
• On his relationship with Cory: “We’ve grown closer as we both got into college. Going through childhood and everything, three years apart, we were just far enough where we didn’t want to be around each other all the time. ... Now being in kind of the same walk of life, we’re a lot closer.”
• On Cory showing him the ropes: “I’m pretty sure that he gets a kick out of it because he’s so used to it being the reverse. Now him showing me things and me having to humble up and not say, ‘No, it’s supposed to go this way or that way.’ I’ve just got to respect his maturity now.”
• On competing with his brother: “It’s a little scary because I know he’s definitely a contender and we’re going to be competing for the same job. Just seeing his progression - he’s as strong as me, as tall as me, it’s going to be pretty fun. I’m proud of him. It’s going to be an exciting camp for us.”