Utah football tried to move past the devastating loss to WSU in practice today. The offense went against the scout team defense and the defense went against the scout team offense in practice today. With both going at opposite ends of the field, it made it difficult at times to catch all of the action, but here is what I saw.
Travis Wilson looked better in practice today than he did in the WSU game. His throws were much more accurate; I honestly do not remember him missing a throw. Kendal Thompson also had some nice throws as well. Neither quarterback ran during practice.
Devontae Booker is now the starting running back, and he got all of the carries with the first team offense. He continues to impress me. He is such a physical, determined runner. He does not hesitate to hit the hole. He had multiple nice runs. It is hard to tell how many yards he would have gotten since the scout team defense was not tackling. In a drill where the offense was at their own 1 yard line, Booker always gained positive yardage. Bubba Poole did not have as much success with the second team offense. He had multiple runs where he was stuffed for no gain. Troy McCormick did not get any carries.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends
Tim Patrick and Dres Anderson had the most catches in the scrimmage. Patrick acted as a nice safety blanket for Thompson. Anderson did have one drop on a go route, but he caught multiple passes after that, making several nice catches. It is also worth noting that he stayed after practice with fellow receivers Kenneth Scott and Delshawn McClellon to practice catching with the JUGS machine. it was nice to see that those three were working together to try to improve. Tight end Westlee Tonga also recorded a catch.
Working against the scout team offense (quarterbacked by I believe Connor Manning), the first and second string defense was able to make plays. They were allowed to tackle. The scout team ran a lot of screen plays, and the defense did a nice job closing on the ball and preventing yards after the catch. Boobie Hobbs had a vicious, legal hit. Defensive end Hunter Dimick had an interception and would have likely had a big return. Defensive lineman Jason Fanaika made several plays and provided pressure. Defensive back Brian Allen nearly had an interception as well. Linebacker Jared Norris was flying around making plays during practice as well.