Tuesday Practice Report

The Bruins see the return of a key player after a long injury and Head Coach Karl Dorrell evaluates his potential use this coming weekend. Head Coach Dorrell also talks about the Oregon State running game and comparisons with USC...

-- Safety Chris Horton returned to practice, coming off a surgically repaired wrist. Dorrell said he could be a factor in this weekend's game.

-- Linebacker Justine London sat out of practice with a sore right ankle. Dorrell said later that it was probably from playing on the Washington State's artificial surface, but London will be back in action late in the week.

-- Practice was particularly fiery, with the players showing a lot of emotion, and a little scuffle broke out towards the end of the day.

Below is the transcript from Dorrell's post-practice interview:

Coach Karl Dorrell:

Nice to see (safety) Christ Horton out there today. huh?

"You hear that? He had a couple of hits today that you kind of recognized he was back. If you talk to him, I'm sure he'll tell you he's had fun. He's made it through the day. I'm sure he was anxious today to see how his wrist would respond because it's pretty taped up even though I don't think anything could damage it. I know he's excited to be back and we're excited to have him back."

I know it is Tuesday and you don't have personnel decisions yet, but what kind of role could he play?

"He's going to play, he's going to play safety and we're going to get him into the rotation. I didn't see any setbacks in him and what he's done. He's stayed in shape throughout the whole time he's been out so it is not a matter of him staying in shape, he is in shape, it is just a matter of him getting tuned up to do some things for the secondary and I think by the end of the week he should be fine."

With his hand he can't play special teams, can he?

"No, he will probably do some things. We'll see. Probably the biggest thing he can't do is catch, but I think he can do almost everything else."

Because he had the ability to get in the punt block, so that's something he can do with his hand?

"I don't know, we're going to have to see how that plays out. I know he's a viable member on our special teams and we would like to get him utilized on any responsibility he's had in the past."

(Safety Dennis) Keyes will still be starting at free safety?


How's the play of (offensive guard Robert) Cleary been the last couple of weeks?

"Solid. He's played very very well. He came off the bench against Cal and had a very good game and played a very good game last week. He hasn't given up a sack yet so those are the things that I'm sure he's concerned about, as is anybody, so he's played very well. We ask him to do certain things and he does it, so we are very fortunate to have that type of experience as a backup in there that most people don't' have."

What about Oregon State's run game?

"Very efficient. They execute well.  I thought against Cal they had a good game plan and they stuck to it. And that runner ran very well, has good vision and quick feet, durability and toughness to him. He earned every bit of the yardage that he was able to accumulate in that game. I'm sure he's good for them and a concern for us because we haven't done well against the run. We will continue to work on the things to we need to do to get better on that and we'll show that Saturday.

Any injuries?

"No, no injuries. Thank goodness for that.  But we have Horton back, so we gained one. But we're nicked up like everyone else. But nothing significant."

You and USC have both had three straight come-from-behind victories. Is that a compliment in your eyes?

"I don't know. You can make your take on that. We feel confident and fortunate about our situation just because we have been able to pull out some wins like that. In comparison to what they're doing, I don't think there's really any significance to that right now because it is the middle of the season and there are so many games to play still. My goal is just to continue to focus on the task at hand and this week's task is Oregon St."

So, you were not watching the USC game before you stepped in the field?

"No , we were in the Pullman locker room last week, not knowing anything about what was going on in college football. I know their game came on exactly as we were leaving the hotel so we were trying to ask people about what have they heard about anybody or any scores, like most college football coaches do. But we didn't know anything until we saw some of the scores on the score board in the stadium."

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