UNLV nears start of prep work for USC season-opener

UNLV takes a break in training camp Tuesday while coach Tony Sanchez embarks on his annual TV tour to promote the Rebels.

Sanchez and his staff have a good idea of who will be in the starting lineup when the Rebels open Sept. 1 at Southern California, though questions remain about where some pieces fit and how the rotations will work.

“You’ve been through these camps, and you know your team, and they’ve worked hard the entire offseason,” Sanchez said. “Nothing to get too fired up about or too low about. Our guys are doing a good job of showing up every day and working hard and giving a great effort, so we’re where we need to be.”

Preparations for the opener begin in earnest next week when the team goes into scout-team work. Coaches already spent the offseason working on game plans for the first four opponents, though there is a lot of unknown about USC given the Trojans’ changes at quarterback, running back and on the defensive line.

“When we get done with our scrimmage on Saturday, we’ll come back the last two weeks and it’s 100-percent USC prep,” Sanchez said.

Position breakdown

Secondary

Cornerback

1. Jericho Flowers, Jr., 5-10, 175

2. Alex Perry, Soph., 5-11, 170

Free safety

1. Dalton Baker, Sr., 5-11, 185

2. Greg Francis, Soph., 6-2, 195

Strong safety

1. Evan Austrie, Jr., 6-0, 195

2. Demitrious Gibbs, Jr., 6-4, 190

Cornerback

1. Jocquez Kalili, Sr., 5-11, 185

2. Myles Plummer, Jr., 6-1, 170

Notable

— UNLV continued to experiment with its offensive line, with junior Jaron Caldwell moving to the right side to play tackle, where he rotated with senior Nathan Jacobson. The Rebels have moved linemen to different spots throughout camp.

— Redshirt freshman interior offensive lineman Justice Oluwaseun remains ahead of schedule in his recovery from an ACL tear suffered in spring practices. “He’s doing all our pre-practice stuff,” Sanchez said. “He’s doing all our walk-through stuff. He’s moving around. He’s just not involved in any of the contact. We’re hoping that comes in the next couple of weeks.”

— Sanchez said sophomore quarterback Armani Rogers “had probably his best day throwing the ball of the entire camp.”

More Rebels: Follow all of our UNLV coverage online at reviewjournal.com/Rebels and @RJRebels on Twitter.

Contact Mark Anderson at manderson@reviewjournal.com. Follow @markanderson65 on Twitter.

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