by BRENT BRIGGEMAN firstname.lastname@example.org -
Scrimmage in the stadium
Air Force held Saturday’s practice in Falcon Stadium and spent the majority of the time in full scrimmage mode, complete with an officiating crew and live tackling.
A small crowd of about 40 people was scattered the stands.
The game-like conditions gave the best opportunity thus far to evaluate the team’s top two quarterbacks, and Kale Pearson was the clear early winner.
Pearson, guiding the first team, led several efficient drives and ran for a touchdown (he was off-limits to tacklers, but his decision on a scramble allowed him to go in untouched).
Jaleel Awini lost a fumble, threw an interception and struggled with accuracy.
“I wouldn’t say I feel different,” Pearson said. “I just feel like as a unit, I thought we clicked well. I wouldn’t say anything has changed in my head. We’re just getting closer to Week 1 and it was good to be out here.”
Coach Troy Calhoun said he didn’t grimace when Awini took a large hit that flipped him feet-over-head. Shortly after, however, Awini was given a yellow jersey to mark him as off-limits to defenders.
Calhoun insists there is no depth chart yet.
“We’ll get a chance to go through the film,” Calhoun said. “We’re in forever evaluation. We’re in daily development right now. I think they both did some things that were pluses, but there are some things we need to get fixed, too.”
LaCoste plays brace free
Anthony LaCoste didn’t see significant time at tailback, as he shared snaps on the first team with Jon Lee. But when LaCoste did see the field he was free of a knee brace for the first time in years.
LaCoste tore an ACL as a sophomore and sprained an MCL as a junior. He had worn braces on both knees during spring and only recently was down to one. He was finally cleared to remove both Friday evening.
“Feels good to be free of it,” he said.
Defensive lineman hurt
Defensive lineman Robert Green was carted off after injuring his right knee in Saturday’s scrimmage.
“He’s going to be out for a while,” Calhoun said. “Once we get a little more extensive evaluation we’ll know more.”
Freshman David Harris replaced Green on the defensive line and will be evaluated along with senior Dana Luebbe to fill the spot if Green is out for an extended period.
Sophomore Gavin McHenry started at the cornerback spot opposite Steffon Batts. Returning starter Chris Miller played on the second team. Miller, who doesn’t have a career interception in 34 games, picked off a pass from Jaleel Awini. . Wide receiver Ty MacArthur did not participate in the scrimmage. Calhoun said he’ll miss the next week or so with minor injuries. . Freshman receiver Jalen Robinette rotated in with the first team.
BRENT BRIGGEMAN, THE GAZETTE