Offense tops defense in balanced scrimmage

While Bobby Petrino felt his defense got the better of the offense during the Cardinals first scrimmage last Monday, the third-year U of L coach gave the offense, led by 6-4 sophomore quarterback <b>Brian Brohm</b>, the edge Saturday morning. Complete scrimmage recap, stats, quotes, and recruiting news inside.

If you're keeping score at home, chalk the University of Louisville's second scrimmage of spring practice up for the Cardinals' offense.

While Bobby Petrino felt his defense got the better of the offense during the Cardinals first scrimmage last Monday, the third-year U of L coach gave the offense, led by 6-4 sophomore quarterback Brian Brohm, the edge Saturday morning.

"I thought Monday the defense probably had the upper hand in the scrimmage, and I thought today the offense probably did," Petrino said. "The defense made some plays, and the offense made some plays. I think our defensive front is going to be very strong. Secondary wise we still have a ways to go. And offensively, I think we got better from Monday."

Brohm completed 21-33 passes for 247 yards, including a 45 yard touchdown strike to wide receiver Montrell Jones. With Brohm under center, the first team offense scored on six of ten possessions during the controlled scrimmage against the first unit defense. Junior running back Kolby Smith carried 12 times for 70 yards and 3 touchdowns, while Michael Bush rushed 17 times for 62 yards and one touchdown. Redshirt freshman George Stripling also carried 21 times for 87 yards, mostly against the number two defense.


Kolby Smith gained 70 yards
and scored 3 touchdowns
during Saturday's scrimmage

"There were times when the defense was on top, and they were making plays, but there were also times when we were making plays on offense," Brohm said. "It was a really balanced scrimmage, and I think it went real well."

Brohm said the offense was focused on playing with more intensity; especially considering the defense bettered them earlier in the week.

"I think both of the (scrimmages) were really intense, but I think the offense picked it up this time and got on par with the defense," said Brohm. "We wanted to shore up the running game, and make sure we had the right reads in the passing game. And we wanted to play with more intensity because the defense wanted it a little more during the first scrimmage, and I think we did that."

Even with senior receiver Joshua Tinch out with a pulled hamstring, Brohm still had plenty of targets at his disposal. Jones led the way with 6 receptions for 128 yards, while junior Jimmy Riley made 5 catches for 105 yards and one touchdown. 6-6, 220-pound Mario Urrutia, a redshirt freshman from Louisville Fern Creek, also enjoyed an excellent scrimmage with 5 catches for 87 yards.

"I think Mario had a good scrimmage," Petrino said. "I think he's got to be in the game making plays. He's shown that he can catch the ball, and run the routes that we need him to. He'll definitely be in the rotation."

The first team defense recorded a three and out against the first team offense early in the scrimmage, and forced field goal attempts in two of the first four series against the starters. Linebacker Brandon Johnson also recovered a Broderick Clark fumble.

"This is a testing day for us to see what they've learned during practice," Petrino said of the two-hour scrimmage. "Effort is what we look for first, then we look at how the players utilize their techniques, particularly when they get tired, and then if they are playing the schemes that we want. So we'll find out a lot from this scrimmage."

Notes

  • Redshirt freshman offensive guard Eric Wood missed Saturday's scrimmage because of mononucleosis. Wood, who has seen action with both the first and second team offensive lines during spring practice, might not return until fall camp. "I'm not sure how much more we'll get out of him this spring," said Petrino.
  • 6-4, 290-pound Aundre Henderson, one of Kentucky's top defensive line prospects from Louisville Manual High School, and Georgia offensive/defensive line prospect Nick Sloan both attended Saturday's scrimmage. Henderson also visited Louisville's practice on Wednesday, and Sloan made his second trip to Louisville this spring.
  • Though Tinch didn't participate in the scrimmage, he did take part in drills both Friday and Saturday morning. Petrino said following the scrimmage that he expects the 6-3, 225-pound senior to be back next week.


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