Oh the Utah kicking game. Will it ever be just right for the Utes?
If it isn't the inconsistency of the place-kicking bugging the Utes, it is the kickoff return coverage.
"It was disappointing [Wednesday]," Utah coach Kyle Whittingham said. "Usually it's a strong suit of ours the last five years but it's suspect. It's a work in progress. We'll look at it again tonight and decide if we need to make any personnel changes."
Whittingham said the issues were a combination of effort and maybe inexperience.
"We've got some guys feeling their way down the field instead of cutting loose and that is one area where you need speed and courage to be successful," he said.
Earning their keep
The Utes awarded scholarships to backup quarterback Adam Schulz and freshman defensive back Tyler White on Wednesday.
"It was really based on their spring performance but we had to wait and make sure the numbers were right with the NCAA before solidifying them," Whittngham said. "They are well deserved. They are two really good kids."
Aside from the special teams work, the Utes feel they are on target with their preseason preparations.
"We're starting to get there," quarterback Jordan Wynn said. "We're starting to finalize game plans and getting ready so it feels close."
They aren't all that
Many players were relieved the end of camp meant the end of two-a-day practices, in which they practiced in the morning and evening.
However, Whittingham said the players have it relatively easy now, noting they were able to have just five of the two-a-day sessions due to regulations.
According to NCAA rules, players must have three hours of recovery time in between sessions and two-a-days can't be held on back-to-back days.
Such limits didn't exist when Whittingham was playing for BYU.
"Way back when, we had 15 straight days of two-a-day practices," he said. "It's watered down now quite a bit. I don't think that's a bad thing, I'm all for the safety of the players, it's just not as much of a grind as it was 15 or 20 years ago."
Whittingham, who prides himself on a strong work ethic, admitted he wasn't a fan of two-a-days as a player.
"It's necessary though," he said. "You have to be strong willed mentally as you are tough physically."