Fall Camp Report: Aug. 14

Read about a shuffle in the second-team defensive backfield and get all of the latest on UW's infirmary list.

After taking Sunday off from practice, the Wisconsin football team returned to Camp Randall to practice in full pads Monday afternoon. The Badgers practiced in a glaring sun and the contact, for the most part, remained light.

Quarterbacks

Starter John Stocco roamed the sidelines with his leg wrapped up and he carried crutches, watching his backups in action.

Overall, junior Tyler Donovan probably had the best day, thanks to a recovery from a rough start. During a drill where five receivers squared off against four defensive backs and three linebackers, Donovan had a little trouble with his accuracy, tossing three quick interceptions, though one was off a dropped ball.

While he started inauspiciously, Donovan later found his mark during scrimmage action, looking particularly accurate on medium-range passes. He completed three of his first four passes during the final scrimmage and completed four straight passes two more times before practice was over.

Donovan also looked good rolling out of the pocket.

Redshirt freshman Dustin Sherer had a more up-and-down day. He never seemed to find his rhythm on Monday, sometimes completing two passes in a row and following with two plays of indecision.

Running Backs

The tailback position remained mostly a three-way battle at Monday's practice. P.J. Hill, Jamil Walker and Lance Smith all saw frequent reps.

Hill perhaps saw a few more reps than others. He showed good bursts through the holes and showed resiliency, always fighting through the first contact that he saw.

Walker looked particularly good in the first of two scrimmage sessions, showing a variety of shifty cut-backs to find his way through the line.

Smith showed the same great speed that he has shown since he showed up at UW and also worked hard, dragging through tacklers. Most noticeable, however, was his blocking from the running back position. He more than once held off a blitzing linebacker when called upon.

Wide Receivers

Some of the wide receivers struggled early on in position drills, possibly due to the position of the sun.

Freshman Lance Kendricks was back in pads, but continues to have work to do. Fellow true freshman Isaac Anderson appeared to have been dinged up midway through the practice. Luke Swan continued to sit out as well. All injury verifications will have to wait until after Tuesday's 3:45 p.m. practice when head coach Bret Bielema speaks to the media.

Jarvis Minton, Marcus Randle El, Paul Hubbard and Xavier Harris saw the most extensive action. Randle El used good hands in traffic on a few occasions and had his man beat deep but was interfered with during scrimmage action.

Jarvis Minton also looked good catching the ball and Jeff Holzbauer made a few grabs.

Tight ends were also a favorite of the quarterbacks on this day as both Travis Beckum and Andy Crooks seem to be adapting to their converted position nicely.

Offensive Line

The offensive line depth continues to remain the same for the most part and the first team, led by Joe Thomas, has been pretty strong in opening gaps for the running backs.

Thomas was joined on the front line by Andy Kemp, Marcus Coleman, Kraig Urbik and Eric VandenHeuvel.

The second unit, which struggled a little more to contain the first-string defensive ends, consisted of Danny Kaye, Jake Bscherer, Mark Gorman and Jeffrey Stehle, with both Luke Knauf and true freshman Brad Thorson taking reps at the center spot.

Defensive Line

The biggest news of the afternoon was that junior tackle Justin Ostrowski was in attendance, but not suited up to practice.

The unit continued to rotate through different schemes and matchups, using eight different players up front in several different ways.

Matthew Shaughnessy, Nick Hayden, Jason Chapman and Joe Monty started out at the front four, with both Shaughnessy and Jamal Cooper--seeing action at each end.

Kurt Ware, Mike Newkirk and Brandon Kelly saw time in the second unit. O'Brien Schofield also stepped up to play the end at times.

Shaughnessy and Cooper continue to show their speed, and on one play against the second-team offensive line, arrived at the quarterback at the same time. Cooper found his way around the edge numerous times.

Monty filled a gap to plug up a running back's hole.

Linebackers

DeAndre Levy began practicing in full again and made an interception during the five-on-seven drill early on in practice. Levy worked with Elijah Hodge and Jonathan Casillas on the first-team of linebackers.

Paul Joran continued to fill in when necessary.

Casillas, who appeared to tweak an ankle early on, shook the injury off and was definitely at full speed. He was able to break up a pass during five-on-seven play. He would also later force a fumble.

Ryan Flasch, Joshua Neal and Culmer St. Jean made up the second team, with Jaevery McFadden filling in as well. Flasch went down with an injury during drills midway through the practice. He walked off the field under his own power, but did not return to action.

Both Neal and Hodge, at the mike position, quickly filled the gaps to stall the running game during the scrimmage.

Defensive Backs

There were no changes on the first-string depth in the defensive backfield. Jack Ikegwuonu and Allen Langford manned the corners with Joe Stellmacher and Roderick Rogers as the safeties.

Rogers continues to look very strong, seemingly intercepting at least one pass per day. This time, his theft came on the very opening play of five-on-seven action. He also got his hands on at least one other pass and also hit one receiver, forcing him to drop the ball.

The depth was different for the second-squad however, as Ben Strickland and Shane Carter were at the corners with Zach Hampton moved back to the safety spot. He was joined by Jay Valai as Johnny White sat out with an injury.

Hampton looked comfortable back at safety, making two interceptions on the day. As could be expected, the true freshman Valai is still working through kinks with the help of assistant coach Kerry Cooks.

It appears that Carter will be called upon to add depth wherever the team will need him. He appears capable of playing either at cornerback or safety. The coaching staff clearly wants him on the field.

After changing Saturday's second practice into a walk-through, the Badgers are scheduled to take part in their first two-a-day Tuesday. One practice is scheduled for 8:15 a.m. and the other for 3:45 p.m.


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