PROVO For the second year in a row, BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall canceled practice so his team could watch a movie.
On Thursday, the Cougars viewed the new Batman film, "The Dark Knight."
"It's a great time to give the guys a break and give them time to refocus on the remainder of fall camp," Mendenhall said. "The players have done exactly what we have asked them to do. I think this provides them a great opportunity to sharpen their focus and prepare for the final eight days of fall camp, and then to begin preparing for our first opponent."
Thursday night, the team took part in the annual Cougar Kickoff, giving fans the opportunity to meet them. The women's soccer team, the cross country teams and the women's volleyball squad also participated.
The Cougars return to practice today with two sessions one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Their second scrimmage of fall camp is scheduled for Saturday at LaVell Edwards Stadium.
O-LINE OBSERVATIONS: Offensive line coach Mark Weber is pleased with the line's depth and the players' progression.
"They're doing a nice job," Weber said. "That first group still has some things they need to do better, but they're doing a solid job."
The first team O-line consists of freshman Matt Reynolds at left tackle, senior Ray Feinga at left guard, senior Dallas Reynolds at center, senior Travis Bright at right guard and senior David Oswald at right tackle. Projected starting center Tom Sorensen is out with a shoulder injury and may have surgery.
Among those who are backing up the starters include sophomore Garrett Reden, junior college transfer Jesse Taufi, junior R.J. Willing, sophomore Terence Brown, sophomore Jason Speredon, freshman Brock Stringham, freshman Mark Freeman and sophomore Nick Alletto.
"The thing we're pleased with is that second group is making small improvements every day and are coming along," Weber added. "That third group is even doing a nice job and some of them are true freshman."
CORNERING THE MARKET: BYU defensive coordinator Jaime Hill said the secondary has yet to take on a personality as a group, but he loves their attitude and work ethic.
"Right now, they're swimming. The guys who are our No. 1 guys are really trying hard. The next group down are trying to figure out life."
Hill's plan is to find a two-deep. "By next week, we'll go with those guys and the rest will move over to scout team and we'll just get ready to play."
NUMBERS GAME: BYU tight end Dennis Pitta wore the No. 88 as a freshman in 2004. When he returned from a mission, he found fellow tight end Andrew George wearing No. 88. That was just fine with Pitta, who switched to No. 32."I've always liked the number 32," Pitta said. "I wore 32 in Pee Wee football and in high school. My freshman year, number 32 was taken. When I got back, Andrew was number 88. I thought that was a good opportunity to switch back to my roots."
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E-mail: [email protected]