Football: Utes Prepping for Saturday Scrimmage


Kiffer Creveling

University of Utah sophomore quarterback Tyler Huntley (1) looks for an open man in an NCAA Football game vs. The UCLA Bruins in Rice Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City, Utah on Friday, Nov. 3, 2017 (Photo by Kiffer Creveling | The Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Gianna Cefalu

In the fourth week of spring camp, the University of Utah football team is preparing itself for its final scrimmage before the annual Red and White game.

“[Monday] was a good practice,” said head coach Kyle Whittingham. “It was physical and had some live work at the end, some goal-line work which we desperately needed. Thursday won’t be as physical, but we have a big scrimmage on Saturday that is probably the most important scrimmage of the spring.”

Lo Falemaka, the expected staring center and one of the team’s leaders, will play in the 2018 fall season as a fifth-year senior. Falemaka has been excited about spring camp thus far as well as the upcoming season.

“Spring camp has been a lot of learning for me so far,” Falemaka said. “It’s been fun and competitive. We’re getting out there, and I see this team only going up. As a team, we’ve grown from our fundamental and play mistakes, and a lot of that has been cleaned up through repetition in practice.”

The offense is making good progress with Jack Tuttle and Tyler Huntley at quarterback. Considering Tuttle graduated from high school early, Whittingham is impressed he’s competing and contributing to camp. Whittingham is also pleased with their consistent efforts on the field and their ability to push each other this spring.

Wide receiver coach Guy Holliday is excited for the team’s talent with wide receivers this spring. Despite losing Darren Carrington II, Holliday sees the physical toughness and competitiveness in each and every Utah receiver. Demari Simpkins and Samson Nacua have been standing out in practice. Jameson Field and Jaylen Dixon have also have caught Holliday’s eye by working hard and getting good reps.

The addition of the new recruits Solomon Enis and Terrell Perriman and the return of Britain Covey will balance the number of receivers out. By the time fall arrives, Holliday wants to see all of the receivers gain more confidence and the ability to make plays.

Another key player for the Utes is senior kicker Matt Gay. Whittingham believes it will be a tough act for Gay to improve from his junior season, but he is confident in his skills and ability to maintain his past success.

“He broke several school records and led the nation in a few categories,” Whittingham said. “So that is his challenge, to have his encore performance this fall and to be able to produce at the level he did last year. He is a big-time talent, so hopefully we will get the same results and he can have another very productive year for us.”

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