Despite some defensive starters being held out for rest, the UTEP offense finished Camp Ruidoso with a strong outing in the Miners’ final scrimmage in the mountain resort village.
All three quarterbacks (Greenlee, Johnson, Metz) led touchdowns drives in the ever important the move the ball period, and the Miners’ freshman running backs continued their strong week.
At one point, the quarterbacks started 12-of-14 passing, they finished 22-of-31 passing for 201 yards, a touchdown, plus zero turnovers Sunday morning.
Greenlee was an impressive 7-of-7 for 82 yards and a touchdown. He ended his first drive with a five yard scramble for a score.
Kavika Johnson was just as good going 8-for-10 for 71 yards, and Ryan Metz finished the morning 5-of-9 for 39 yards.
“I thought it went real well.” Sean Kugler said after the scrimmage. “I thought all three quarterbacks in the move the ball segment did a good job.”
The offense dominated the move the ball segment, they also won the goal line and short yardage segments with freshman running back Kevin Dove showing some short yardage skill with his 250 pound frame.
Eddie Sinegal caught four passes for 40-yards, veteran wideout Tyler Batson matched him with the same exact numbers on the day. Hayden Plinke caught a pair of passes for 38-yards, and Cole Freytag added 27 yards on two catches.
“It was a good bounce back period for those guys.” Kugler said of the offense in short yardage and goal line periods in the second scrimmage. “I was glad to see that because the last time we did that defense kicked the offense’s tail. “
Defensive starters Devin Cockrell, Alvin Jones, Gino Bresolin, and Sky Logan were all given a day off for rest. Aaron Jones was also a spectator on the sidelines.
Dashone Smith racked up six tackles, Chris Richardson tallied a sack, and Kalon Beverly had four tackles.
The defense was able to grab a pair of sacks in the Miners two-minute drill, and forced a three-and-out in the Miners four minute segment.
“Defense did win the first scrimmage, offense won this scrimmage, so you love when you team has good give and take, that means they are competing.” Kugler said.
Kugler did not name a starting quarterback, citing the the Miners have one more week of camp back in El Paso, but its pretty clear after today that Greenlee is the Miners’ leader in the clubhouse so far.
“We’re still evaluating those guys.” Kugler said of the quarterbacks. “But right now you saw the pecking order today, that job is still up in the air but I thought he (Greenlee) did some really good things today.”
Kugler went on to say this coming week will still be an evaluation week for the quarterbacks, but he’s very pleased with all three and he excepts the competition to come down to the wire.
One the main stories that developed this week was the emergence of electric freshman running back Quadraiz Wadley.
Wadley ran for 63 yards on 10 carries on Sunday, fellow freshman Kevin Dove added 62 yards on right carries.
“He’s going to play for us this year out of necessity.” Kugler said of Wadley. “I hate to put a comparison on a guy but he reminds of Aaron Jones when Aaron was a freshman”
UTEP returns to El Paso this afternoon, and will have a day off on Monday before resuming camp on Tuesday in El Paso.