FALL CAMP DAY 7: Carpenter making adjustment

LEWISTON -- Another year. Another new position for senior Anthony Carpenter. After starting at cornerback last year, the senior continues to adjust to safety. While Carpenter makes the transition, his teammates had little difficulty stifling the offense during Thursday's practice, which lasted about two hours.

Simply put, the defense won the day. Sophomore defensive linemen Xavier Cooper was hard to handle as he bullied his way through the offensive line, which made it difficult for the quarterbacks to make adjustments and reads.

Cooper had two tackles-for-loss as he was a menace in the trenches during the team session.

Carpenter worked with the No. 2 unit at safety during the team session along with senior safety Casey Locker. At times, Carpenter has struggled with his technique and made mental mistakes in practice.

"I am focusing on my pad level," Carpenter said. "Coach has harped me on that … I just got to get low and explode out of my break -- that is what I have been working on."

Carpenter started the last six games in 2012, but that position is deep and defensive coordinator Mike Breske believed Carpenter would make a better fit at safety.

"We moved him to [safety] … just to give us some depth," Breske said. "We have pretty good depth at the corner position right now and Carp knows both."

Carpenter was not disappointed with the move.

"I love safety because it comes more natural to me and I played it in high school," he said.

With Carpenter's move, there is plenty of competition for playing time. Down the stretch, the battle for the two deeps at the safety will be interesting because of the emergence of true freshman safety Isaac Dotson and an extended scrimmage coming this Sunday.

Dotson did not work with the linebackers Thursday. But he received time at the safety position with the No. 2 defense. According to defensive coordinator Mike Breske, Dotson is going to be working with the safeties this year.

Dotson received reps during 1-on-1 and 7-on-7, but was kept out of team session.

"We kept him out of team just because it is so fast right now," Breske said. "He is swimming a bit mentally, so we wanted him to take mental reps."

Senior safety Deone Bucannon was a full participant Thursday. He, along with sophomore safety Taylor Taliulu, worked with the No. 1 defense at safety. After working with the No. 1 defense Wednesday, senior safety Bennett Bontemps did not work with the first or second unit during 7-on-7 or team session.

One of the big topics at camp has been when junior linebacker Chester Su'a will join the team. Su'a was in attendance at camp today, but was in street clothes.

OFFENSIVELY, redshirt freshman quarterback Austin Apodaca and junior quarterback Connor Halliday were hurried during 7-on-7 and scrimmage due to the defensive line bringing pressure, which resulted in an array of check-downs.

Junior wide receiver Bobby Ratliff continued his performance from Wednesday and ran near perfect routes, which garnered him praise from Halliday during 1-on-1s.

Junior wide receiver Isiah Myers hauled in a miraculous one-handed grab from Apodaca as senior cornerback Damante Horton tightly covered him.

Halliday shined during 7-on-7 as he made proper reads and had a notable 25-yard pass down the sideline that was grabbed by Isiah Myers.

The running game is beginning to show up in spurts. The defense was stuffing the offensive line Thursday in the trenches. Despite that, sophomore running back Teondray Caldwell managed to make a strong 5-yard run up the middle for the first touchdown during 11-on-11.

At the end of scrimmage, the offense and defense managed to be tied up and the winner of team session came down to the final play.

With the defense standing under the field-goal post cheering on their fellow white jerseys, everyone turned their attention to the final play of practice.

Unfortunately, the play ended with a fumbled snap by senior offensive lineman Zach Brevick, which resulted in an Apodaca "sack" and enabled the defense to prevail.

"I thought about reloading it … for the sake of the play," Leach said. "… It is a shame we didn't put it in play regardless of who didn't come out on top."

Running with the 1s
Offense:
QB – Connor Halliday
RB – Teondray Caldwell and Marcus Mason
X, H, Y, and Z receivers – Many players receiving reps
LT - Gunnar Eklund
LG - Joe Dahl
C - Elliott Bosch
RG - John Fullington
RT - Rico Forbes

Defense:
DE - Toni Pole
NT - Ioane Gauta
DE - Xavier Cooper
BUCK - Destiny Vaeao
SAM - Cyrus Coen and Tana Pritchard
MIKE - Darryl Monroe
WILL - Justin Sagote and Tana Pritchard
CB - Nolan Washington
CB - Damante Horton
S – Deone Bucannon
S – Taylor Taliulu

Bikes:
S Paris Taylor
WR Tyler Baker
LB Austin Rapp
LB Feddie Davey

Not in attendance:
OL Matt Meyer
S Darius Lemora
DL Paulo Lepua


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