PLAYER ON THE RISE: Utah coach Kyle Whittingham said that sophomore defensive tackle Lei Talamaivoa, a projected starter, got better in Thursday's practice. Whittingham noted that sophomore Nai Fotu and freshman Mo Neal made plays at linebacker and that the secondary was solid.

INJURY REPORT: Junior Tyler Williams, who is battling sophomore Zane Taylor for the starting center job, strained his shoulder Thursday and left practice early. The offensive lineman's status should be more clear today.

NOTES: Thursday was the first of three consecutive tackle practices for the Utes. ... All spring practices and scrimmages are open to the public. Saturday's session is scheduled for 10 a.m.-noon at the practice fields west of the Smith Center. ... The annual Red & White Game is slated for Saturday, April 19, at Rice-Eccles Stadium. Kickoff is 1 p.m.