Several years removed from playing in Murrieta, Skyler Ridley, Tyler Beck, and AJ Moore are having the time of their lives playing together for Brigham Young University.
Patch caught up recently with the threesome between
two-a-day practices on the Provo, Utah campus for a joint interview. Moore is a “redshirt” freshman for the
Cougars while Ridley and Beck are in their senior season.
Moore, a 2010 Murrieta Valley graduate, is a running back and rushed for 12 touchdowns and 921 yards on 125 carries for the Nighthawks during his senior season of high school. He also had four TD catches and 548 yards on 37 receptions that season for Coach Greg Ireland’s team. He was also credited for a 46-yard touchdown pass early that season against Rancho Verde.
Moore hopes to see action this year behind a talented group of upper classmen.
Beck, a 2007 Vista Murrieta graduate, is a linebacker for the Cougars and was selected Southwestern League Defensive MVP his senior year. He has been on scholarship from his freshman year on. Plagued by a couple of leg injuries, he is now 100-percent healthy and expects to see ample playing time this year at defense and special teams.
Beck is currently listed as No. 2 at his outside—or “buck”—linebacker position in the depth chart for the team.
Ridley, also a former Nighthawk (Class of 2007), is a wide receiver and led the valley in receptions his senior year. Ridley was a leader on and off the field, serving his senior year as ASB president at MV. On the field, he was recognized by the CIF-Southern Section as a Champion for Character.
Ridley began his college career as a walk-on. He finished his junior year of college with 20 receptions for 206 yards, including an impressive 7-yard touchdown reception in his team’s season-opener against Washington State and was offered a scholarship following the season.
Ridley was slated to start Saturday’s season-opener in Charlottesville at the University of Virginia at one of the wide-receiver positions. His teammates have great confidence in his leadership and last week voted him one of four of their captains.
NFL scouts are now taking notice of Ridley as shown in this YouTube video from BYUtv Sports: http://bit.ly/1d53KZe
All three players give due credit to their prep coaches and value their experience and the high school level in getting them ready for college-level ball.
The Cougars finished 8-5 in 2012 and were 23-6 winners of the San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl over the San Diego State Aztecs. They enter this season ranked 31st in the SportsRatings 2013 College Football Pre-season Top 125.
At least eight of BYU's games will be televised this season. The Cougar football team is not affiliated with any conference, having opted to go independent. Its schedule may be considered by some as daunting but its hopes are high for a successful campaign.
Their Oct. 25 home game against Boise State will see another Vista Murrieta grad, BSU Bronco sophomore kicker Tyler Rausa, on the gridiron at Lavell Edwards Stadium.
Aug. 31 at Virginia
Sep. 7 vs Texas
Sep. 21 vs Utah
Sep. 27 vs Middle Tennessee
Oct. 4 at Utah State
Oct. 12 vs Georgia Tech
Oct. 19 at Houston
Oct. 25 vs Boise State
Nov. 9 at Wisconsin
Nov. 16 vs Idaho State
Nov. 23 at Notre Dame
Nov. 30 at Nevada
Of note: Addison Pulsipher, a 2013 graduate from Temecula Valley High School is a freshman offensive tackle on the Cougars roster. His older brother, quarterback Andrew Pulsipher, is finishing his LDS mission and will return to the team next season. Current Vista Murrieta senior defensive end, Tyler Cook, signed with the Cougars in early August.