Although he had it within his mind at a very young age that he would one day become a Cougar - both of his parents graduated from BYU and he’s always wanted to follow in the footsteps of his parents - Andrew George grew up watching a lot of college football from the state of Colorado.
“Colorado State and Air Force are two teams I saw a lot of growing up,” said Cougar tight end Andrew George. “They were always on TV and CU [was] as well. There are still some people that I knew at [CSU] and in the state from my high school who will be watching the game and know that I’m playing. It’s always fun to go back and see some old friends and have the chance to play in front of them.”
So which of the Colorado teams did he favor the most growing up?
“You know, probably more Colorado University, then CSU and then Air Force,” said George. “Air Force ran that wing-t, triple option attack, and that wasn’t quite as exciting to watch, especially from my position. Air Force wasn’t necessarily a place I wanted to go to play college ball, so I watched a lot of CU and CSU.”
In regards to Colorado State, George had a few friends that went on to play football for the Rams, and although they’ve all since graduated, George faced a few of them on the field of play in years past.
“The last player that I was good friends with that played there was Dustin Osborn, who was a wide receiver,” George said. “But he’s gone now because I’m older than he was. My best friend in high school played either two or three years at CSU, and his roommate was Dustin Osborn. I would hang out with them all the time and got to know Dustin really well. He was one of their best receivers. I think two years ago was his last year.
“I knew Jesse Nading in high school,” George continued. “He was their defensive end last year, number 59. I knew him and it was kind of the same thing. He was best friends with my friend at CSU and hung out with him at CSU, but he was the last one that I knew that played for CSU.”
Going back to his home state, George will be able to play in front of those whom he grew up with and still keeps in contact with, as well as his family members.
“I do still have a lot of family in Colorado,” George said. “My parents still live there and my wife’s family still all live there and are from North Denver. So both of our families are from there, so I have to find a lot of tickets for this week.”
During the UNLV game, George caught two passes for 17 yards and one touchdown. BYU quarterback Max Hall found nine different receivers that game in an attempt to distribute the ball to more teammates. George expects this to continue as the Cougars head to Colorado.
“That’s how it was to start the season as well,” said George. “The football was going everywhere and keeping defenses guessing a little bit. For whatever reason we got away from it a little bit, but it was nice to get back to it and see different guys catching the ball almost every play. It makes it almost impossible for defenses to key on one or two people.”
With Dennis Pitta being the primary receiving tight end, he’s faced more double teams than George has. However, George feels that if the Cougar offense continues to distribute the ball more widely, opposing defense might not be able to continue doing so.
“I know Dennis is facing a lot,” said George with chuckle. “I’m not facing as much because I’m not the All-Conference, All-American guy. So he’s facing more of that, which is opening stuff up not only for me but also for other guys. So he’s seeing some different coverages when he’s out there, but he does a good job … when he’s out there. Soon teams are going to have to stop doubling him because it’s not helping them. We’ll see what happens as the year progresses and things keep getting spread around.”
Although he may not be the primary receiving tight end, George has had quite a lot of success in the blue zone. Hall has found George on several occasions, hitting pay dirt whenever the Cougars are within the 20-yard line, and although George has been very successful at scoring touchdowns, he feels his greatest asset to the team comes in other areas.
“The most important thing to me, because I’m not our number one receiving tight end, is blocking,” George said. “So if I can block and get into a rhythm that way, it kind of takes my mind off of having to make other plays or having to play outside myself. If I can block and open things up for the running backs, that’s my number one priority.”