Utah Utes expecting big things from junior Siaosi Mariner

SALT LAKE CITY -- The Utah football team is expecting big things this year from junior wide receiver Siaosi Mariner.

He’s off to a great start, with six receptions for 73 yards, and one touchdown that he’s watched back a few times.

"I mean, I watched it a couple of times,” said Mariner. “You know, the family going a little crazy over it. It's been good. It was fun. It was a nice first one."

Mariner's touchdown came in the third quarter when the Utes’ offense was in full gear, after a slow start against Weber State. Getting off to a better start is a main focus for the offense this week when they play at Northern Illinois.

"Just starting fast and keeping our hands on the ball,” said Mariner. “We know we are a capable unit as far as receivers and the offense. We know what we are capable of. We know what we can do. It's just a matter of doing it faster. I feel like we showed it in the third quarter what we can do, but we got to start that from the first time we touch the field. We expect to score every drive. That's the same energy we want to keep all season."

This is Siaosi’s third year in Utah’s program, but the first since he changed his last name from Wilson to Mariner, in honor of his mother.

"Mariner is my mom's last name,” said Mariner. “I had my dad's last name for the my whole life up until I recently changed it to my mother's, just because she's been a single parent in my life and she's been there my whole life and she's done a good job, so I felt the need to change it to her game. She was excited for it. She was happy. I felt like it always kind of should have been there and it finally happened."