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August 17, 2011
Ute offense responds
Wednesday evening at the Utah baseball fields, the Ute offense got back up to speed and took steps to address what has been the team's primary concern through the second week of camp: pass protection.
"It was a good day overall and we did make progress. The pass protection was a little better today," reassured Whittingham.
Offensively, everything was a little bit better Wednesday night, which proved to be one of the better sessions of the week.
"I thought the offense in its entirety was sharper than it has been in a few days, and the defense wasn't quite as sharp," observed Whittingham. "I think the offense as a whole executed better today."
The comments from Whittingham were good news, because the Utes focused Wednesday night on situational and red zone work, the areas in which they struggled most in Tuesday's scrimmage.
Jon Hays once again took the majority of the reps due to Jordan Wynn's illness, and was sharp in the red zone, with touchdown passes to Devonte Christopher and Dexter Ransom.
The Ute offense scored with equal effectiveness on the ground, with Karl Williams, who ran with the ones Wednesday at running back, pushed his way through two defenders for the score. Harvey Langi also got some looks, and was able to break into the end zone on a goal line situation as well.
Despite the success, Kyle Whittingham stated that Wynn's schedule, set forth by the training staff, has made it difficult for the offense to be consistent.
"The inconsistency of [Wynn] at practice has affected us a little bit. We need to get him out here on a regular basis," said Whittingham. "The sooner, the better."
Also contributing to the inconsistency of the offense is the bouncing around of linemen and the shuffling game that has gone on on the offensive line. Whittingham, however, singled out two players who have been selfless, and have stepped in to help the team and acknowledged the job [
"Out of necessity, [Kapua Sai] has bounced around and played both tackle and both guard spots, so he's a guy that has been spread pretty thin and that's tough on a player who is a young guy and doesn't have a lot of experience," acknowledged Whittingham. "You're putting him all those different places, and that's a challenge, and he's handled it pretty well."
Defensively, the highlight was an Eric Rowe pick off a Jon Hays pass on the two yard line.
To cap off practice, Hays and Tyler Shreve each ran a two-minute drill, and each was able to engineer drives long enough to give kickers Nick Marsh and Coleman Petersen the chance to attempt field goals. Marsh missed one, and made one while Petersen converted his single attempt.
The Utes return to practice Thursday morning for a single session followed by their last two-a-day on Friday. Fall camp concludes on Saturday morning with a final scrimmage, which is closed to the public.