LOGAN – Zach Vigil received a text message from a friend Thursday morning that included a link to USA Today’s list of college football’s 2014 All-Americans. Vigil said he was surprised but felt honored to see his name on the list.
“It’s very humbling,” he said.
He was named a second-team All-American, but that wasn’t the first honor the senior from Clearfield has received. Vigil has a lengthy list of honors collected in his time as an Aggie, including being named the 2014 Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year, and he may not be done yet. Saturday’s bowl game in New Mexico will be his last as an Aggie, but he still has a good shot of breaking some records.
With 42.5 tackles for loss during his career and 19.5 this season, Vigil is one tackle for loss away from the breaking the USU career record set in 1993 by Jermaine Younger and tying the Mountain West Conference single season record set by Boise State’s Demarcus Lawrence and Colorado State’s Shaquil Barrett. Three tackles would break Younger’s USU single season record of 22.
“That would be neat,” USU head coach Matt Wells said. “Jermaine has had that record for a while. It’s time to pass that torch to someone else.”
Even if Vigil doesn’t get the records, it won’t change Wells’ opinion of him.
“He doesn’t need those two records for me to say, ‘Yeah, he’s one of the best,’” Wells said. “There’s no question he’s one of the best to ever play here, in my opinion. He doesn’t need those two records to legitimize that.”
Records or no records, Wells said Vigil sees the team’s success as more important than his own, and right now only cares about winning the bowl game against UTEP, his final game as an Aggie.
“No senior wants to remember their last football game as a loss,” Vigil said. “The seniors on this team and I’m sure the seniors on their team are saying the same thing.”
Vigil said he’d like to think he has made Utah State football better since he arrived at the school, but said “time will tell.”
“I’m just very grateful to be a part of this program and a part of a group of guys that never gave up and was very resilient through the whole process, through all the injuries, through everything, through all the ups and downs,” he said. “It’s a very resilient group of seniors here. Just very proud to say I played with these guys.”