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Utes offense looks sharp in first scrimmage

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Sports) - The Utes offense made important strides in their first week of training camp.
SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Sports) - Running back Kelvin York and wide receiver Anthony Denham led the offense in the first scrimmage of the fall, held this morning in Rice-Eccles Stadium.

“Our offense continues to show steady improvement, but it’s hard to get a great read since we held out some players on the No. 1 defense,” said head coach Kyle Whittingham. “We may keep them out (of live situations) until the first game since we know what they can do and to prevent possible injuries,” he added.

Tenny Palepoi, Eric Rowe and Brian Blechen were among those taking the day off for the defense, while Jeremiah Poutasi was held out from the No. 1 offense.

York rushed 11 times for 70 yards and a touchdown, with a long run of 20 yards. Denham scored a touchdown on both of his receptions, while racking up 63 yards. His first TD catch came on a 51-yard pass from Travis Wilson.

Wilson was 3-of-7 passing for 56 yards and a touchdown before tweaking his ankle and spending the rest of the scrimmage in “the pit.” His injury is not considered serious and Whittingham said, “There is no question he could have finished if it were a game. We held him out as a precaution.”

Adam Schulz, Brandon Cox and Conner Manning split the QB reps with Wilson out, but Whittingham stressed that none pulled ahead of the pack for the backup job. Freshman Micah Thomas quarterbacked the No. 3 offense.

Schulz finished with 72 yards on 6-of-10 passing and one interception (by Charles Henderson). Manning was 10-of-20 for 116 yards and three touchdowns—two during red zone work and one in the two-minute drill. Cox was 3-of-10 for 33 yards and one TD.

Recording sacks were LT Tuipulotu, Nate Orchard and Hayden Clegg. Clegg’s came on his first play. Viliseni Fauonuku forced a fumble that was recovered by Travis Still.

The kickers got a lot of work and Whittingham proclaimed redshirt freshman Andy Phillips as the leader. “Andy separated himself. There are still two weeks left before the first game, but for now, he’s the guy,” said Whittingham. Phillips made all five field goal attempts with a long of 37 yards. The longest made field goal came off the foot of redshirt freshman Jamie Sutcliffe from 55 yards out.
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