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Utes football: Utah set for final week of spring ball

Published: Thursday, July 30 2015 11:09 p.m. MDT

Utah Utes quarterback Travis Wilson (7) throws under pressure from Utah Utes defensive lineman Stevie Tu'ikolovatu (97)  during a  team scrimmage in Salt Lake City  Friday, April 5, 2013.  (Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News) Utah Utes quarterback Travis Wilson (7) throws under pressure from Utah Utes defensive lineman Stevie Tu'ikolovatu (97) during a team scrimmage in Salt Lake City Friday, April 5, 2013. (Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — Spring football has almost completely sprung at the University of Utah. The Utes practice Tuesday and Thursday before closing out camp with the annual Red and White game (1 p.m., Pac-12 Networks) on Saturday.

“We need to keep making progress,” said Utah coach Kyle Whittingham, who added that he’s still very pleased overall when looking at the big picture.

After last week’s scrimmage at Rice-Eccles Stadium, Whittingham noted that there were still some things to rectify on offense. Even so, he said there were a lot of positives as well — explaining that the offense is “night and day” ahead of last year after 12 practices.

While acknowledging that adjusting to a more up-tempo offense is a work in progress and that quarterbacks Travis Wilson and Adam Schulz are learning, Whittingham would like to see them make a few more plays than in the last scrimmage when the defense made a strong showing.

“We’re very close to becoming a very good offense,” Whittingham said. “But good offenses don’t do the things that we’re doing right now as far the self-inflicted part of it. So that’s what we’ve got to get taken care of.”

Wilson added that the Utes have “got to finish strong” over the final week of practice.

The offense will get a chance to do so in the camp finale. It will have the opportunity to showcase its abilities in Saturday’s spring game, facing a “base defense” throughout the contest.

Assistants Morgan Scalley and Jay Hill will serve as head coaches for the Red and White teams, respectively, in a game featuring four 10-minute quarters and a running clock in the second half.

Other variables include no kickoff or punt returns in the game, as well as the scoring team retaining possession when trailing by 10 or more points.

EXTRA POINTS: An alumni flag football game is set for Saturday at noon, just prior to the spring game. ... Between quarters and at halftime, several presentations are scheduled. Honors include the Deseret Duel trophy, recognition for the women’s basketball team for finishing second in the WNIT, tailgate contest winners and an announcement that the volleyball team will be moving into the Huntsman Center this season. ... All outdoor practices and the spring game are open to the public.

Email: dirk@desnews.com Twitter: @DirkFacer

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