Karene Reid is ‘super confident’ in Utah’s LB’s facing Florida
With game week finally upon us, the University of Utah is engaged in their final preparations to face the Florida Gators in Gainesville on Saturday. While the Utes are currently ranked No. 7 and mostly favored to emerge with a victory given how much talent returned from a season ago, there are some new faces amongst the defense that will need to step up to make that happen.
As a newly elected starter, sophomore linebacker Karene Reid isn’t exactly a new face, but he’s stepping in as a new leader following the departure of Devin Lloyd and Nephi Sewell to the NFL. Heading into his first start, Reid is both excited and grateful.
“Coming together with the team, we’ve been working so hard, pushing each other and finally it’s our time to show the whole nation what we’ve got…all I can say is that I’m grateful. I’ve definitely worked for that but there’s not a day where I don’t step back and say, ‘Man I’m grateful to be in this position.’ So I just want to keep that legacy going,” Reid said.
While his first start will certainly be a challenge, especially facing a respected SEC opponent with loads of talent, both Reid and head coach Kyle Whittingham are confident in the group to get the job done.
Perhaps the greatest challenge for the linebackers in game one will be containing star quarterback Anthony Richardson. Standing 6-foot-4, 232 pounds, Richardson is a dangerous dual-threat quarterback who can hurt you in a plethora of ways. If he’s not contained, Utah could struggle to walk away from the swamp with a victory and thats something Reid fully understands.
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“He’s just an amazing athlete so we’ve got to be on our A game as far as rushing lanes and staying in our gaps, we have to be disciplined. If one guy misses a gap, he’s going to make us pay. So film study,” Reid explained.
Overall, Reid and the rest of the linebackers feel prepared for the task ahead. While facing such a talented team from arguably the best conference in the country will be a remarkable challenge, Reid says the key to victory will be staying true to their roles in order to contain Florida’s offense.
“Gap integrity,” Reid said. “Staying true to our roles and our gaps because like I said, that quarterback can make you miss, throw it over top, so we have to cross our T’s and dot our I’s.”
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