Silver & Gold Game Focus: The DEs

Essentially every position on the Vandal Defense is in a heated battle for ownership. One of the biggest battles taking place is with the Defensive Ends, and this group will certainly be one of the youngest on the team in 2002. It will also potentially be, with time, one of the most talented.

Last season, Brandon Kania earned a starting role on the Vandal defense as a true freshman...less than 12 months removed from helping his team win Washington's State High School Football Championship as a member of the Pasco Bulldogs. He received his indoctrination into D-1 college football as a starting Rush End at Husky Stadium in Idaho's 3rd game, and played one of the best games of his first season as a Vandal. That game probably had a lot to do with him being voted a Freshman All-American by The Sporting News after the season. A well deserved honor, to say the very least.

Tyler Scott, 6-4, 250, RS-Fr
Honors aside, however, Idaho's entire young depth chart has earned a chance to compete against Idaho's number one offense this spring. The whole group has played well, including a solid performance by Brandon. JC transfer Kody Kraus, a native of Rexburg, Idaho who comes to Moscow via Ricks College, has also had a strong spring camp. He's looked good both against the run and rushing the passer, and has earned praise in Idaho Press Releases from Head Coach Tom Cable for his performance throughout camp.

Three redshirt freshmen in Mike Bonelli (Camarillo, CA), Tyler Scott (Sandpoint, ID) and Jeff Edwards (Coeur d'Alene, ID) are also coming on strong. During the third week of drills Bonelli received praise from Coach Cable for his effort during the week. All three have excellent size and appear to be picking up the new defensive coaching staff's schemes quickly. They are a strong, athletic group that is only lacking playing time and experience.

The group is going to receive at least one more jolt of depth when JC transfer Kelly Nead (6-4, 236) arrives in Moscow for fall practices. Plus, senior Dennis Teateafa (6-3, 270) has petitioned for a waiver on the season he missed a year ago, and could be granted one more year of eligibility. If so, his experience, maturity and size will likely prove to be valuable assets for this group.

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