UTSA hit the practice field for their first day in full pads. InsideRunnerSports brings you a practice report.
Football Practice Report for 8.7.15:
First Day in Pads:
It was UTSA’s third workout in pads but the first day in full pads. Coach Coker said it was the best first day and that the team practice pads. The Roadrunners start two-a-day practices on Saturday.
Bogie Still #1:
Starting QB Blake Bogenschutz appeared to handle all of the first team reps in today’s portion of the practice open to media. With the first team offense looking sharp, Bogenschutz connected on several good passes and ran the offense crisply.
High praise for Bogenschutz:
Preseason All-Conference CB Bennett Okotcha said that QB Blake Bogenschutz is the best QB he’s ever played with, including going back to his days at Oklahoma when Landry Jones was the signal caller. Okotcha on Bogenschutz: "He doesn't make mistakes. He can manage the game and he can win you the game." Backup TE Trevor Stevens had similar praise for Bogenschutz saying: “He's focused every single day. Guys trust him, guys respect him.”
A Chance for Austin:
Coach Coker said backup Austin Robinson was having a good fall practice and that he thought Robinson would get an opportunity to play sometime this season. The Houston-native appeared to be splitting second team reps with Michigan transfer Russell Bellomy.
JaBryce on First Team:
East Texas-native JaBryce Taylor worked out with the first team today due to an injury to starter Kenny Bias. Taylor continued to look good catching a few balls thrown his way as well as being having some good blocks on some runs. At 6’1” and 220lbs, Taylor is one of the biggest receivers on the roster. He physical presence is certainly noticed when he enters the defensive backfield.
Junior RB Brian Vaughn says he’s finally 100% healthy after suffering several injuries over the past few seasons. Pegged as a backup, Vaughn is considered one of the fastest players on the team. Now healthy, Vaughn says he feels more explosive. Look for him to contribute as a change of pace back.
Stevens Getting More Reps:
Junior TE Trevor Stevens is seeing more reps this fall than he has in any previous season. The Friendswood-native is primarily the backup TE but has seen some he’s played some plays on the first team. It remains to be seen if UTSA will utilize multiple TE sets like they have in the past. But if they do, Stevens appears to be in position to see his playing time increase.
Dahlquist Ready To Go:
Junior Dawg Safety Chase Dahlquist says he’s fully healthy from a back injury that kept him out of all the workouts this past fall. Dahlquist says he likes the pace of the new up-tempo offense stating that it’s making the defense better.
Attitude Can Be a Good Thing:
UTSA was predicted to finish last in the preseaon CUSA media poll. That isn’t lost on several of the players. RB Brian Vaughn had this to say about the preseason prediction: "It's pretty disrespectful. But that's ok because that's nothing but fuel to the fire." Safety Chase Dahlquist says he expects the team to make some noise early in 2015 saying: “"Arizona thinks we're going to be an easy game but we always turn heads early. So we're gonna turn heads."
Ubabuike Cracks Two-Deep:
Senior Kennedy Ubabuike has worked himself into one of the starting Defensive Tackle positions ahead of Vontrell King-Williams. Ubabuike worked with the first team defense today and played well next to Brian Price.
Other Depth Chart Changes:
UTSA updated their two-deep depth chart on Friday. The only other significant changes were the additions to Redshirt Freshman DT Kevin Strong and Sophomore CB Aneas Henricks as backups. Strong replaces Juco Jonathan Tuiolosega and Henricks becomes backup with Nkeal Bailey.
Starting Center Juan Perez and Starting WR Kenny Bias headline a handful of players who did not workout at today’s practice. The other players out with injury: TE Triston Crossland, S Austin Jupe, and S Andrew Martel.
LARRY COKER POST PRACTICE QUOTES
“This is the best first day of pads I’ve been around. Usually in the first day of pads guys get a little tired, slow down, and feel sorry for themselves but it was a good day today. Guys moved around fast and we coached them hard. We have a lot of young guys but I’m very excited about the talent we have. We are faster. We’ve got a long way to go but we are making progress.”
How daunting is the first third of the schedule?
“I don’t look at the first third of the schedule. I’ll look at it down the road somewhere. We’re going to have to be our best. It’s not about our first opponents. It’s about us. How good can we be? Can we do our job? Whatever happens, happens. Our guys are going to compete, they’re going to be conditioned, they’re going to play hard and play well.”
Who are some of the players that are standing out?
“I like a lot of them. I like the quarterbacks a lot. I think several of these guys can be starters. I like that. I think that’s what we need. Some of the guys that you know haven’t been disappointing at all.”
Austin Robinson said he felt like he’d get a chance to play this season, do you expect to play multiple QBs this season?
“We have a first team quarterback. We saw multiple quarterbacks play last year because we had to but that’s the reason you have multiple quarterbacks. I think they’ll get their opportunity. I like that Austin (Robinson) has some experience. He’s had a good fall camp.”
What can you say about the pace of the up-tempo?
“We’re going to play faster but I think that’s kind of the norm of what everyone is doing now. But we’re going to play a little faster than we have in the past. I think we’re practicing ourselves into shape. I think the players like it and I like it.”