Rebels seek clarity on injury situation

The playing status of UNLV cornerback Quinton Pointer came down to a game-day decision against Utah State, but coaches hope to know his availability sooner for Saturday’s game at Utah.

Because of a dislocated left elbow, Pointer did not play in the Rebels’ season-opening 27-17 victory Saturday. Coach Mike Sanford said he might know by Wednesday whether Pointer will play in the 5 p.m. PDT game against the Utes.

Will Chandler took Pointer’s place against the Aggies and had a 12-yard fumble return and four tackles.

Defensive tackle Jacob Hales, a Las Vegas High School graduate who also has a dislocated left elbow, missed the game as well. His status will be determined later this week.

“I think if it were strictly up to Jacob, Jacob would play,” Sanford said Monday.

Replacement Martin Tevaseu wasn’t credited with any statistics against Utah State, but was part of an effort by the line to hold the Aggies to 111 yards rushing. Sanford said all four line starters were named defensive players of the game.

CLEAN EFFORT — Penalties and in effectiveness in the red zone were issues for the Rebels last season, but were no problems Saturday.

UNLV was penalized only four times for 30 yards. The Rebels were last in the nine-team Mountain West Conference last season with 61.2 penalty yards per game.

They scored on all three trips inside the 20-yard line, including two touchdowns. In 2007, the Rebels were last in the MWC by scoring on 70.3 percent of their red-zone trips, including 15 touchdowns, which also ranked last.

UNLV did not commit a turnover against Utah State, ending a 23-game streak with at least one giveaway.

ODDS AND ENDS — Utah probably will be ranked when the national polls are released today. The only other time the Utes were ranked when they played UNLV was in 2004 when they were No. 9 and Sanford was their offensive coordinator. Utah won, 63-28. … A victory would give the Rebels their first 2-0 start since 1999, but they are 0-6 at Utah. … Wide receiver Casey Flair climbed from seventh to fifth on UNLV’s career receptions chart with 157. He is within reach of record-holder Damon Williams’ 187, and needs five receptions to take sole possession of third place.

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

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