Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Cowboys to change up second scrimmage

Richard Anderson photo
Wyoming running back Darius Terry looks for some more yards in last week's scrimmage.

By Wyoming Sports.org

The Wyoming coaching staff got what it wanted last week when it named a starting quarterback following the first scrimmage of fall drills. It’ll change a bit Wednesday night with the season opener just around the corner.

The Cowboys will scrimmage for about 75 plays at War Memorial Stadium, beginning at 5 p.m.

Wednesday’s scrimmage will differ from the first scrimmage of the fall. Rather than starting each series of the scrimmage from the offense’s own 25-yard line, this second scrimmage will see offensive series coming out of the offense’s end of the field, some series beginning at midfield and some series beginning in the defense’s territory. The other difference will come in the form of more repetitions for the No. 1 and No. 2 units on both sides of the ball. The younger players making up the No. 3 units will see very little action. The No. 1 offense will again face the No. 2 defense, while the No. 2 offense will go against the No. 1 defense.

“The defense had really great field position last week; this week we will try to put some pressure on the defense by starting in their territory some,” said Cowboy head coach Joe Glenn. “We want to get a lot of kicking and punting into this scrimmage, and put some game-like pressure on our kickers to see how they react. We will also incorporate some kickoff return and kickoff coverage.”

This second fall scrimmage will be the final game-like situation the Cowboys will be placed in leading up to their home opener against Ohio on Aug. 30

Glenn said he has been pleased with the performance of sophomore quarterback Dax Crum since naming the Arizona native the starter last Friday.

“This is the first time we’ve scrimmaged since naming Dax the starting quarterback, and I might add that he’s been playing really well in my opinion,” said Glenn. “He might miss a read here and there, but he’s been performing well and Coach (Bob) Cole has been working very closely with him this week. Dax has made some big plays and is getting more and more familiar with his receivers. I think that was another reason we felt we needed to name a starter last week at quarterback, so that he and his receivers could continue to improve their timing and their chemistry.”

Hospital Ward

Several players will miss Wednesday's scrimmage. The most recent injury came to redshirt freshman Brandon Stewart, who was the projected starter at one wide receiver spot and at punt returner. Stewart injured his left shoulder in practice on Monday running a fly sweep in red-zone work. He will likely be out several weeks.

Also injured on Monday and out for the scrimmage will be redshirt freshman linebacker Bryson Studnicka (left toe sprain). Starting left offensive tackle Ryan Otterson suffered a right ankle sprain in Wyoming’s first scrimmage a week ago and he will miss this week’s scrimmage. Also injured in the first scrimmage and out for this week will be junior linebacker Zeb Whipp (neck sprain). Other players out with injuries include backup linebackers Jimmy DeAndrea (fractured left thumb) and Mark Oliver (left Achilles strain), backup center Travis Hillen (right shoulder), freshman offensive lineman Levi Salmans (dislocated left knee cap), freshman linebacker Ben Durbin (left shoulder) and redshirt freshman Marcus Felker (right elbow sprain). Senior starting linebacker Mike Juergens has been ill with a virus this week and his availability for Wednesday night is uncertain.

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