Kedon Slovis fits into BYU football as if he’s slid onto a well-worn saddle.

He has a grasp of the tradition. He’s digesting what’s asked of that position in a demanding college community. He plies his words carefully and effectively before microphones and notebooks.

He’s spent his summer in Provo working out with receivers, backs and tight ends. His time off was minimal and his workouts serious. 

And he has established what has now become a rite of passage since Zach Wilson and Jaren Hall — meeting with Southern California QB whisperer John Beck. It is Beck, who has been through the webs and crevices in college football and the NFL, that can quickly and constructively orient Slovis to the intricacies of the position while fine-tuning technique and the throwing motion.

Slovis has the arm. He has the accuracy. He has a quarterback mindset.

It’s now a few weeks from when his mission will be proving he can lead BYU’s chase for first downs and touchdowns.

In his first day of fall camp this week, Slovis explained how his growing confidence in his receivers and the rest of the offense is evolving.

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He spoke of how important the work was this summer in player-run practices.

He explained how there were so many reps with his teammates in those PRPs, that when camp began, they were closer to being on the same page.

This is important.

If he’d been waterskiing, golfing, hitting the beach, fishing or camping all summer, it would have shown on Day 1.

He met muster.

“We’ve done so many PRPs that there shouldn’t be any MAs (missed assignments),” Slovis told reporters after Monday’s practice.  

“If anyone’s been dong PRPs, they’ve already run these plays at least five times and if you were here in spring you’ve done them 10 or 15 times.”

Slovis is excited to be in a setting where there’s energy, excitement and a staff that knows what they’re doing and showing it rep after rep. That, he declared, is why he liked BYU when he was recruited.

“That’s the biggest thing, I don’t think we made any mental errors and everyone for the most part did their job,” he said. “Now we have to execute some things better. That’s the stuff I looked for today, especially in the way our offense is run. We’re not running every play in the world, but we have to run our plays effectively.”

Slovis is quickly finding out the QB standards in Provo. He’s glad he has Aaron Roderick as his coach who is creative and seeks to add to his philosophy and system. He knows the names on the wall, those who are Hall of Famers and a Heisman winner.

All he has to do is average about 300 yards and three TD passes a game, have a pass efficiency rating of 157 or above, help win 10 or more games, and average over 30 points a game with this offense to make the Cougar faithful gleeful.

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In other words, he needs a year like he had as a freshman at USC.

Back in 2019, Slovis threw for 3,242 yards at a 71% clip for 28 touchdowns and had a 167.6 pass efficiency rating.

Slovis says he’s excited by what he’s seen and the potential. He likes that he’s got veteran receivers back like Kody Epps, Keanu Hill, and Chase Roberts and coach Fesi Sitake has brought in recruits who can stretch the field and are also plugged into what is expected.

Slovis said BYU ran two complete offenses and defenses on different parts of the field to get as many people involved as possible so coaches could make evaluations on the depth chart. He said he likes that BYU has five solid offensive linemen and five more who are capable.

The fact that there are eight receivers pushing for playing time makes the offense better because, as he put it, there could be injuries, guys could get tired and tap out and others will be able and capable to step in over a long, tough Big 12 season.

“It’s a good problem to have. Guys go down all the time, it’s a violent sport. We need to find out how to use them. There’re a lot of mouths to feed,” he said.

Slovis claimed that of all the teams he’s been on (USC and Pitt), BYU has the most depth at every position that he’s seen.

Among those bodies is the challenge of 60 new players injected onto the scene who were not here last fall. That can work as a positive or a negative.

“The culture is here to get it done,” he said.

Slovis is an easy guy to like. He’s easygoing, positive, calm, upbeat and very quotable.

The time is coming when he’ll be hunted, chased and rushed.

His demeanor can’t hurt when it comes to facing extreme challenges in the pocket come mid-September when he faces Arkansas in Fayetteville.

BYU Cougars football quarterback Kedon Slovis talks to journalists.
BYU quarterback Kedon Slovis talks to journalists after practice at BYU in Provo on Tuesday, Aug. 1, 2023. | Spenser Heaps, Deseret News