UNLV coach Bobby Hauck’s plan is to play multiple tailbacks early next football season to keep them fresh, but redshirt freshman Bradley Randle appears to be making a serious push to eventually make the job his own.
He broke a 67-yard touchdown run and later a 45-yard gain in today’s practice at Rebel Park.
"We’re all getting better," Randle said of the backs. "We’re all pushing each other. We’re all learning from each other and trying to make each other better."
Hauck wasn’t ready to pronounce one back ahead of another.
"The running back crew is doing a nice job, and they’re all challenging for playing time," Hauck said. "I would assume early in the year we’ll play a bunch of guys there, so we may get to September and it may not be a big issue who gets the first snap. I’m kind of a firm believer, especially early in the year, in playing a lot of guys at that position."
Among the more notable players practicing with the first-team defense were senior linebacker Calvin Randleman, senior safety Mike Grant and senior cornerback Warren Zeigler.
"If a guy practices well, he’s going to have a chance to go run with the first team," Hauck said. "That kind of sends a message to everybody if you’re practicing well, you’re going to get a chance."
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Interceptions were recorded by junior linebacker Beau Orth and senior linebacker Ronnie Paulo. Defensive linemen Preston Brooks, Daniel Mareko and Isaiah Shivers had sacks. Brooks and Mareko are seniors and Shivers is a redshirt frehman.
Zeigler leveled a big hit on junior tight end Austin Harrington and broke up a pass to junior wide receiver Michael Johnson. Senior defensive tackle Isaako Aaitui had a big hit on Randle, and junior linebacker Nate Carter tackled junior tailback C.J. Cox for a loss.
ODDS AND ENDS
Redshirt freshman safety Courtney Bridget (ankle) returned to practice. … Senior defensive tackle Malo Taumua (illness) did not practice. … Former UNLV tailback Frank Summers, now a fullback for the Pittsburgh Steelers, attended practice.