Quarterback battle begins as Utes open training camp

Quarterback battle begins as Utes open training camp

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Sports) - Travis Wilson and Kendal Thompson both looked impressive as the Utes football team kicked off training camp at Rice-Eccles Stadium.
SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Sports) - Let the battle begin.

Quarterbacks Travis Wilson and Kendal Thompson both looked sharp as the Utes opened training camp Monday at Rice-Eccles Stadium.

"It was an exceptional day one," said head coach Kyle Whittingham. "But, it's only day one."

After being cited for underage drinking 10 days ago, Wilson was back on the field as the Utes starting quarterback. Any punishment that was or will be administered is being handled internally, as Wilson is trying to put the whole matter behind him.

"It's something me and Coach Whitt handled together," said Wilson, who was cleared to participate in full contact after a head injury ended his 2013 season. "Obviously it's not who I am. It's a decision that I wish I could take back, but it's in the past now and I'm just all worried about football now."

"Am I happy with the way he's responded from that?," asked Whittingham. "Ya, absolutely. We handled that internally and we expect Travis will not have any more issues of that nature."

What Wilson will have is competition. Oklahoma transfer Kendal Thompson had a solid debut in practice, and the dual-threat quarterback feels he will eventually make a case to be the starter.

"Yes, I feel that was as a player," Thompson said. "Any quarterback should feel that way and as a competitor, I feel that way. That's up for the coaches to decide, so I'm just going to go out there and do my best everyday. Today, I felt like I jumped right in and hit the ground running."

Wilson says he has to face competition for his job every season and is looking forward to playing with Thompson.

"I love having competition around me and love having guys push me," Wilson said. So, it's great having him out here and the other QB's as well."

"It's a true competition, and it's going to be a dogfight," said wide receiver Dres Anderson. "They both look amazing, they both are doing the right thing and they both have the offense down pretty well. So, it's going to be interesting."

Wilson is the clear cut favorite as of now, but Whittingham won't announce the starter until right before the season opener August 28th against Idaho State.

"It obviously has to be done by a week out from the first game," Whittingham said. "But until then, there is no timeline, which essentially gives us three or four weeks to try to get it sorted out."

There will also be competition at running back as explosive newcomer DeVontae Booker could unseat Bubba Poole and eventually get the majority of the carries.

"They're putting a lot of weight on my shoulders," said Booker, a junior college transfer from Sacramento. "But I really don't think much about it. I'll just continue to do my job and not making any mental errors out there on the field. I run hard and am looking to score on every play. I could be that home run player at any given time."

The Utes kick off the season August 28th at Rice-Eccles Stadium against Idaho State.
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