As spring ball comes down to the final week, sophomore safety Kamo’i Latu feels the team is looking forward to what every player and fan alike is anticipating the most: the start of the new season.
“We’re looking forward to a season. We just started spring ball and you can tell we’re sick of going against each other…we’re a physical team,” Latu said.
Coming off of a freshman season where he saw action in all 14 games, his breakout performance against USC saw him record a team-high 10 tackles which earned him Pac-12 Freshman of the Week honors. However, Latu isn’t resting on any past success and is using that experience to help him get better.
“I’m fortunate and blessed enough to have live game reps,” Latu said. “I know how it feels to go out there and play in front of a crowd.”
During spring ball, Latu has been spoken highly of by multiple coaches and was noted by head coach Kyle Whittingham as, “really making strides.” Part of that boils down to zeroing his focus on what he needs to be doing on the field.
“Something we say on defense is to ‘own our 20-square feet,” Latu said. “Each individual and each position knows what to do. Whether you’re a linebacker, safety, corner, d-line, we all have to do our job so we can make the puzzle pieces fit.”
While the team is coming off one of the most successful campaigns in program history, it will take some time to regroup and refocus, especially with the loss of multiple key contributors on the defensive side of the ball. But that doesn’t mean the formula or culture has to change, something Latu knows is paramount to winning.
“We know what we have to do. Take it day by day, game by game,” Latu said. “As a team, we know what the end goal is. When the clock strikes zero, we have to be ready for whoever’s next.”
It doesn’t matter if it’s a cliche or not. If Latu and the Utah defense take it day by day, game by game, and continue to make it difficult for opponents to score against them, they’ll make other teams wish the clock could strike zero sooner than 60 minutes.
For now however, there’s still roughly five months between the spring game and the beginning of the fall season. For Latu, while it couldn’t come sooner, he’ll just have to remain focused on improvement as he and the rest of the team prepares for a highly anticipated 2022 season.
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