(Photo: Scotty Bara/WCSN)
With a shortened week in preparation for its Friday night showdown with New Mexico, Arizona State had an extended list of players in green, non-contact jerseys in today’s practice.
Redshirt junior running back De’Chavon Hayes, redshirt junior wide receiver Fred Gammage and junior defensive lineman Ami Latu were all in green and went through stretches today.
One of the brighter spots from the uneven win was the late surge from redshirt junior wide receiver Tim White. After White missed the season opener with a wrist/hand injury, he made his presence known against Cal Poly.
With ASU up 28-21 and 4:07 remaining in the game, White caught a 19-yard pass over the middle, then immediately followed that with a 59-yard run inside the 10-yard line. Redshirt senior quarterback Mike Bercovici found White on a 4-yard touchdown pass to seal the game up with 1:59 left on the clock.
“I feel good. I’m good with the offense now,” White said. “I’m getting more familiar with him (Bercovici) and how his release is.”
All of White’s touches against Cal Poly came on that series, including receiving the punt to start the drive. With Hayes injured and a shaky showing from sophomore running back Jacom Brimhall in punt and kick return, White has been seeing a few reps in that aspect as well.
White’s showing at the end of the game is surely a reassuring sign for the Sun Devils given the absences of Hayes and Ballage. With those two out, senior D.J. Foster saw more time in the backfield, racking up 76 rushing yards on 12 carries.
“It felt good (getting more touches),” Foster said. “I’m down, I’m game for whatever they need me to do, and it felt good being back in the backfield.”
Roster shuffling on the defensive end
Sophomore safety Armand Perry was on crutches and in a walking boot after sustaining what looked like an ankle injury against Cal Poly, and sophomore running back Kalen Ballage was in green but a non-participant today. Ballage has missed the last two games due to illness.
With an ever-growing list of injured players, it is forcing various changes across the roster.
After sophomore safety James Johnson got first-team reps at field safety in place of Perry, freshman Kareem Orr was at the position today. Orr was the No. 56 rated cornerback according to Scout.com and chose ASU over an offer from Ohio State.
“Obviously, you’d like to have someone with more experience,” ASU defensive coordinator Keith Patterson said. “But Kareem, he has a chance to be a special player, and we’re going to bring him along and try to get him in the right position to make plays.”
When Perry was sidelined, sophomore Chad Adams stepped in against Cal Poly but did not record a tackle. He, Johnson and Orr are the likely candidates to fill in for Perry.
“We got those guys competing,” Patterson said. “The people who perform and can do it under pressure will obviously be the guys that will get more playing time.”
– Junior kicker Zane Gonzalez lined up for what looked like a 40-yard field goal attempt from the left hash mark, pushed it wide right.
– Redshirt junior Evan Goodman and redshirt freshman Sam Jones were the starting offensive tackles today. Redshirt senior Billy McGehee, who went down with an injury against Cal Poly, was not playing with the first team in tempo.
– No word on if freshman running back Jason Lewis will redshirt.
– Scouts for the Cincinnati Bengals and Arizona Cardinals attended practice today.
You can reach Zac Pacleb on Twitter @ZacPacleb or via email at email@example.com