Forget about waiting until the team leaves for its annual camp in Ely. It looks as if UNLV will name its starting quarterback before then.
Rebels coach Mike Sanford said Monday during Mountain West Conference media days at Green Valley Ranch Resort that a starter will be announced “probably in the first three or four days” of camp.
UNLV opens training camp Aug. 4 on campus, then heads to Ely on Aug. 9. This will be the third year in a row the Rebels head north to prepare for the season.
Sophomores Omar Clayton and Travis Dixon will compete at quarterback, and Sanford said they should have enough time to state their cases. Because the decision will come swiftly, it might seem the coaches are leaning in one direction — Clayton’s — but Sanford said that was “not necessarily” the case.
“I think in our situation, there is maybe a guy that’s going to distance himself from the other one,” Sanford said, not necessarily speaking of Clayton. “I want to get that starting quarterback throwing to the receivers whenever possible. I want to have those starting receivers and that starting quarterback working on timing as soon as possible.”
• THINKING BIG — Brigham Young is one of the top candidates from a non-Bowl Championship Series league to break through into one of this season’s elite bowl games.
The Cougars were No. 14 in The Associated Press and USA Today final polls last year, and they figure to be placed high when preseason rankings are released in the coming weeks.
“That should be the goal for any competitor,” BYU junior defensive lineman Jan Jorgensen said of making a BCS game. “Of course, at BYU we’re competitors, we want to be the best, we want to succeed, so it’s talked about.”
But simply making a BCS game isn’t good enough.
“Our eventual goal at BYU is to win a national championship,” Cougars coach Bronco Mendenhall said.
• WANTED MAN — Before taking the podium in front of the league’s print reporters, Mendenhall and Jorgensen waited for the arrival of junior quarterback Max Hall, who was finishing another media commitment.
Finally, Hall showed up, and all three walked to the front.
“It’s a demonstration of the hierarchy of our program,” Mendenhall said.
He seemed to be kidding, but considering BYU’s quarterback legacy, maybe not.