The WKU Football team held its first media availability to the public June 18.

Following morning workouts second year head coach Tyson Helton and redshirt senior Jeremy Darvin answered questions outside Houchens-Smith Stadium. 

“Hats off to President Caboni and Todd Stewart. They did a great job planning and having all the protocols in place. It’s good to see everybody is following the protocols and doing the right things,” Helton said.

In what seems like it has been an eternity since the last organized activities for WKU Football, Helton met the media with optimism and praise for his peers.

“The planning that’s gone into it, and the amount of people that have been involved…it’s just really cool to see it all come to fruition," Helton said. 

Aside from giving thanks to administration and staff, Helton was quick to acknowledge the patience he has seen in his players and the care he has shown them as well.

“I met with every player individually just to see how they are doing personally, and the answer was a resounding ‘Coach we’re just glad to be back with our brothers, with our team, and we need this time to be together,’ so on a lot of different fronts I thought it was really important for us to be back and I think the guys are really really excited about the summer,” Helton said of his team. 

Among individuals, University of Maryland transfer Tyrrell Pigrome is expected to have an immediate impact on the field for the Hilltoppers this season.

Helton was quick to acknowledge Pigrome's fit in the current system and how the quarterback position will be used this season.

“Our offensive system is really built on who the quarterback is and what their skill trait is. If you could say pick your ideal quarterback, the obvious answer is a guy that can do both. We feel like he has the ability to do that,” Helton said. 

Despite Pigrome being a former three-star recruit, Helton also mentioned that the starting quarterback spot is ultimately up for grabs.

“I look at all of our other quarterbacks as well. They all have different skill traits, but they all can run a little bit, they all have quality arms," Helton said. "The two young quarterbacks that we signed fit that mold as well, so there will be some good competition out there come summer." 

Defensive lineman Darvin followed up Helton giving some encouraging words on grooming some of the younger players and overcoming the adversity of a modified offseason.

“It’s no rush. The season is coming, but do not let that scare you or rush you or anything," Darvin said. "There’s still time to get your body back right and get into position to play football. Just stay relaxed. Everybody wants to go in there and throw 400 pounds up. Just ease it out.”

While it is easy to see how players might be nervous and cautious in such an unpredictable time in this world, Darvin gave assurance that excitement and enthusiasm has been the overall vibe amongst the team.

“We were definitely glad to be back. No spring ball, so everybody was at home working by themselves. We’re glad to be out here and suffer with somebody else for a change,” Darvin said. 

A two-month break has stood between the Hilltoppers and their return to the gridiron, but with positivity abundant, and upperclassmen leadership plentiful Darvin believes WKU Football will be back and as good as ever in the coming months.

“That’s probably the longest we’ve had off since high school, so everybody is just trying to get back in the groove this June, so if stuff clears up by July we will really be ready to roll and get to work,” Darvin said.

Football beat reporter Casey Warner can be reached at casey.warner@yahoo.com. Follow him on Twitter @thecaseywarner.

Casey Warner is the football beat reporter for the College Heights Herald. He was previously an opinion columnist writing about local music and politics.