Hauck: Spring game a waste of time

First-year UNLV football coach Bobby Hauck hates to waste time, and that's what he thinks this year's Rebels would be doing by playing a spring game.

So Saturday's noon event at Sam Boyd Stadium is being called what it is: a spring scrimmage. In other words, teams won't be formed, so it will be like other scrimmages this spring pitting the offense against the defense.

Hauck said it was important to go with a typical scrimmage because of the low number of available players and to have a quality final spring practice.

"Sometimes you waste a day doing that," Hauck said of dividing into teams. "It's great for everybody to watch, but you don't get the good work done."

The scrimmage will be the final opportunity for coaches to evaluate personnel until training camp begins in August.

UNLV's offense has had the upper hand in recent practices after a short period of defensive dominance. Senior quarterback Omar Clayton wants the current trend to continue.

"It's a good thing for us because we get tired of letting those guys win all the time," Clayton said.

The scrimmage is free, except for an $8 barbecue lunch.

■ WATCHING AND WAITING -- Junior defensive end B.J. Bell, signed out of junior college last year for his pass-rushing abilities, has stood on the sideline all spring while he recovers from an October surgery to fix his right shoulder.

"It's pretty tough," Bell said. "I want to go out there and contribute my part, but I really can't because they're holding me back."

Though Bell looks forward to making an impression in training camp, Hauck said the missed time doesn't help. He said coaches will have to "work him in" during camp rather than start Bell on equal footing with the other ends.

"He's got to come back and make an appearance and be impressive," Hauck said. "Everybody's really segued into this pretty quickly, and he's missed all of spring. It's not his fault, but it's not anybody else's, either. It's kind of the situation he's in."

■ MAKING PROGRESS -- Clayton said he thinks he has made strides since the beginning of spring drills in picking up the new system.

"Myself and the rest of the quarterbacks, we've been able to get a better grasp of what we've put in," he said.

Clayton, who has started the past two seasons, is the favorite to win the job. He is competing with junior Mike Clausen and redshirt freshman Caleb Herring.

Contact reporter Mark Anderson at manderson@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2914.