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Utah Football: Utes prepare for first Fall scrimmage

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As the Utes prepare for their first scrimmage of Fall camp, we'll take a look at how the depth chart is shaping up and what the coaches might be looking for heading into Thursday.

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Utes are in their second week of Fall camp and with that comes two-a-day practices and their first scrimmage, scheduled for Thursday at 11:10 am. Wednesday will mark the first day of full contact, as well as the first two-a-day practice. Fall practices will be closed to fans and only the last 20 minutes of the morning practice are open to media. The Utes will have two scrimmages before the start of the season, one on Thursday and another on Tuesday, August 18th.

Thursday's scrimmage will give the Utah coaches their first glimpse of the players in live action since the Spring game. It will also be a chance for incoming players such as junior college transfer Cory Butler, and true freshman like Tyrone Smith, a chance to show what they can do in a game situation. The scrimmage on Thursday is scheduled to run about 65 plays. The coaching staff will likely be looking for improvement on the offensive side of the ball as the defense has been much stronger so far through camp.

The latest depth chart had a few interesting moves, namely Cory Butler being listed ahead of Bubba Poole at slot receiver. This is interesting because with Dominique Hatfield not being on the team currently, it seems Butler would be a good fit at the cornerback position, where he had success last season at the junior college level. Butler also has been playing primarily on defense this week where he has looked great. It appears which side of the ball Butler will play on, will not be decided until at least the end of the week. There is a chance he will end up seeing time on both offense and defense once the season begins. The scrimmage should provide the coaches a good opportunity to gauge him at both slot receiver and cornerback.

Speaking of the cornerback position, Brian Allen appears to have asserted himself as a contender for a starting spot. The 6-3 corner has performed well in camp and is currently listed as the starter opposite Reggie Porter. Allen's emergence will help soften the blow of missing Hatfield.

A couple true freshman also found their names on the latest depth chart. Tyrone Smith is listed behind Tim Patrick at one receiver position and Britain Covey is listed as the primary punt returner. With Kaelin Clay gone, Smith and Covey have an opportunity to try and replace some his production from last year.

It appears Sam Tevi and Jackson Barton are the two finalists for the left tackle position. This should be a spot the coaches look at closely during the scrimmage. J.J. Dielman, who had been getting some reps at left tackle has moved back to right tackle, the position he started last season. As it sits currently, Tevi appears to have the advantage over the younger Barton.

No real surprises on defense, where the linebackers are pretty much set with Gionni Paul, Jared Norris and Jason Whittingham. Sophomore Marcus Williams is listed ahead of Jason Thompson at the free safety position as of right now, and is reported to be playing with a lot of confidence. That will be a position to keep an eye on, as Thompson performed well during spring and Whittingham had remarked Williams needed to get bigger.

It's finally the time of year where fans can begin getting excited for football season again. The pads are on, and position battles are heating up. The start of the football season is right around the corner. The Pac-12 Network's Mike Yam, Yogi Roth and Anthony Herron will be on campus on Thursday to film "Football Training Camp." They will have interviews and features on the players. You can catch the episode on Friday at 7pm on Pac-12 networks.