INJURIES HAMSTRING OFFENSE
ELY – Sophomore Marcus Sullivan stood on the sideline in a blue injury jersey as senior Eric Johnson paced back and forth clutching his left hamstring.
It wasn’t the sight UNLV football coach Bobby Hauck wanted with the season opener against Minnesota eight days away. The Golden Gophers visit Sam Boyd Stadium on Aug. 30.
Sullivan, a Cheyenne High School product, and Johnson are needed to stretch the field. Even if they play, they probably won’t be 100 percent.
Sullivan, a wide receiver, has been out with an undisclosed injury after absorbing two big hits Thursday. A hamstring injury has slowed Johnson, who plays receiver and running back.
Their health situations could put more pressure on sophomore receiver Taylor Spencer, who went to Bishop Gorman High, to be the deep threat UNLV needs.
"He had a good camp," Hauck said. "He’s got to keep going, obviously."
Spencer said he was ready to step up no matter the situation. "I take it as a personal goal to try to prove as much as I can that I can play," Spencer said. "But we’re a team. It’s not just individuals."
He figured to be a big part of the offense, even with Sullivan and Johnson in the mix. "As a whole team, everybody gets more responsibility because they’re two great players," Spencer said. "We’re waiting for them to come back, and they should be back for the first game. But if not, everybody’s going to have to step up."
If the Rebels need another receiver, maybe they can use junior quarterback Caleb Herring. He caught a 55-yard pass from senior QB Sean Reilly in Wednesday’s controlled scrimmage. "They left him uncovered," Hauck said. "I don’t know how they didn’t see him out there." Herring competed with redshirt freshman Nick Sherry for the starting quarterback job but lost out Tuesday. "Certainly, he’s not happy," Hauck said of Herring. "I’d be upset if he was happy. But he handled it like a real winner, which is exactly what he is." … The Rebels wrapped up training camp and returned to Las Vegas. "This is my third Ely, and I feel like this is the best camp we’ve had so far," Spencer said. "We’ve got a great new group. Everybody put in the effort." Hauck agreed, saying players didn’t need to be pushed. "I think all these things (players’ positive attitude) are good signs of progress being made," he said.
IN THE SPOTLIGHT
TIGHT END: This appears to be a deep group, but what’s notable about the list below is who’s missing. Freshman Nick Gstrein would be second, but he has an injured left foot. Sophomore Taylor Barnhill has received a lot of practice time and could play, perhaps at H-back, but isn’t in the all-freshman top three.
Player Ht. Wt. Yr.
Jake Phillips 6-6 240 Fr.
Andrew Price 6-6 240 Fr.
Tyler Bergsten 6-4 240 Fr.
Player Pos. Status
Alvin Amilcar DL Limited
David Green DL Out
Nick Gstrein TE Out
Eric Johnson RB/WR Out
Sonny Sanitoa DE Out
Ron Scoggins OL Out
Marcus Sullivan WR Out
Doug Zismann G Out