Second Scrimmage



This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

The Cougars held a 52-play scrimmage this morning at Lavell Edwards Stadium, with Max Hall and the first-team offense getting 27 reps.

*******

Hall led the #1 offense to scores in 3 of his 4 drives--2 field goals and a scrimmage-ending touchdown.

*******

RB Harvey Unga and Manase Tonga were the workhorse backs today, with Unga scoring the scrimmage's lone touchdown on a nifty 26-yard sideline jaunt that included a powerful stiff-arm.

*******

For stats on today's scrimmage, check out byucougars.com

*******

Kicker Mitch Payne was held out with tendinitis, so backup Brian Smith took care of place kicks and kickoffs. Smith made field goals of 38 and 20 yards, and missed from 42 yards out. He made the only PAT he attempted, and had one kickoff go out of bounds. C.J. Santiago had scrimmage punts of 45 and 35 yards.

*******

WR Austin Collie experienced tightness in his hip flexor during warmups and was held out of the scrimmage. RB Fui Vakapuna was once again held out, with the training and coaching staffs taking no chances on a setback between now and the season opener. Fui is running well in practice, but in terms of going full-speed in a "live" scrimmage, he is not exactly where he needs to be.

*******

LB Bryan Kehl and David Nixon were held out of the scrimmage--no injury concerns; Bronco simply wanted to get the backups meaningful reps as the depth chart takes shape.

*******

Bronco says he is asking his coaches to start "pressuring" their players in terms of getting them ready to be contributing backups on this team. Bronco says today shows there is still plenty of work to do in that respect--especially as it relates to execution.

*******

True freshman LB Austen Jorgensen suffered a bruised sternum during the touchdown drive--he left the stadium on a cart with ice strapped to his chest. He's day-to-day with what is a pretty painful injury. Jorgensen, by the way, is one of the top 5 performers at outside linebacker, behind Kehl/Nixon and Nelson/Bolden. He has been getting consistent reps with the 3rd team and occasional reps with the "twos."

*******

DL Judd Anderton sprained his left ankle early and missed the remainder of the scrimmage.

*******

LB Shawn Doman (hip flexor), WR Ryan Neeley (groin) and CB Brandon Bradley (groin) sat out and ran stairs during the scrimmage. LB Kelly Bills watched from the sidelines (concussion).

*******

Doman should be able to return early next week, and LB Terrance Hooks will be re-joining the team on Monday or Tuesday. As Hooks still has to go through the 5-day acclimation period (2 days in helmet only, 2 more days in shells before a full-pad practice on the 5th day), and since he is not playing in the season opener, expect Hooks to re-enter the depth chart as a third-stringer, then work his way back up.

*******

It appears that LB Matt Bauman will indeed stay inside at middle linebacker, although prior to camp, he was projected as an outside linebacker. Right now, Bauman (middle on strong side) and Tyler Beck (middle on weak side, aka "backer") are running with the "twos," behind Poppinga (strong middle) and Staffieri (backer), but once Doman and/or Hooks return, Beck will drop back to the third-string, with Doman then pressing Staffieri for the top spot at backer. Hooks will be in the mix with Poppinga and Bauman at strong middle. I would be surprised if Beck does not redshirt this season.

*******

Bryce Mahuika has established himself as the number one option at both punt and kickoff returner, with G Pittman entering he mix as Mahuika's return partner on kickoffs this morning. The other pair utilized on kickoffs consisted of Cortny Barton and Ryan Kessman. Remember Austin Collie was not available today, and he has also been a return cadidate throughout camp. Barton, by the way, handled the lone punt Mahuika did not return.

*******

Update on wide receiver assignments: this morning in pre-scrimmage drills, lining up at "X" were Allen, Reed, Kozlowski, Smith, Mangum and Miller. At "Z" were Collie (pre-departure), Mahuika, Kessman, Neeley (pre-departure) and Jaussi. Keep in mind, Mahuika is still considered #1 at "H," and recall that Allen, Collie, Reed, and to a lesser extent Kozlowski, run both at "X" and "Z." At "H" were Tervort, White, Barton, Hafoka and Marshall. The "Y" (tight end) spot continues to feature Pitta, So'oto and George as the "three-headed monster."

*******

Safety Kellen Fowler saw reps at both Free and Kat today.

*******

We saw more penalty flags this week than last--WR Matt Allen thought the offense was not nearly as mentally sharp during this second scrimage. Bronco addressed the penalty problems with the team immediately after scrimmage.

*******

The #1 offensive line remains D. Reynolds, Feinga, Aulai, Bright and Oswald (left to right), but R.J Willing (left tackle), Tom Sorensen (center) and Garrett Reden (right tackle) were regularly featured with the ones in place of Reynolds, Aulai and Oswald, respectively.

*******

The primary #2 offensive line has M. Reynolds, Kahaiali'i, Sorensen, Speredon and Alleto (left to right).

*******

QB Brenden Gaskins was the only backup quarterback to see aciton in the scrimmage, and he took all of his snaps out of shotgun. Again, his broken finger isn't healed to the point where he can take snaps from under center. Roughly 90% of Max Hall's snaps were taken in the shotgun.

*******

There were 6 drives today: Hall with 4 and Gaskins with 2.

*******

Following today's practice, the entire team gathered to make a presentation of a signed "Y" flag to a family stricken with some serious health concerns. Their plight was brought to the attention of TE Vic So'oto, who arranged for the presentation and for the team to welcome the family into the post-scrimmage huddle for applause and a rendition of the Cougar "fight song." Bronco called it perhaps the most significant thing to come out of today.

*******

There is a final scrimmage tentatively scheduled for Wednesday--Bronco will decide Monday morning whether that scrimmage will take place. He plans to use video breakdown from today's scrimmage and a weekend of reflection to make the decision.

*******

Check your calendars: the season opener is two weeks from today! Bronco plans to make this upcoming Thursday a "transitional" practice day, with the first "true" Arizona practice set for Friday.

*******

SIGN UP FOR THE KSL.COM NEWSLETTER

Catch up on the top news and features from KSL.com, sent weekly.
By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to KSL.com's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

KSL Weather Forecast