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UND FOOTBALL: Team holds first scrimmage of the season

UND linebacker Ben Peters tackles quarterback Kurt Palandech during Friday's scrimmage at Memorial Stadium. Looking on is P.J. Sparks. photo by Eric Hylden/Grand Forks Herald1 / 3
UND quarterback Ryan Bartels runs a play during Friday's scrimmage. photo by Eric Hylden/Grand Forks Herald2 / 3
UND offensive lineman Ross Windfeldt blocks Marcus Cheatom during a team scrimmage Friday at Memorial Stadium. photo by Eric Hylden/Grand Forks Herald3 / 3

UND held its first scrimmage of the spring season Friday at Memorial Stadium. The results of the 20-some live plays that took place, however, won’t be known for awhile.

And that comes as no surprise to first-year UND coach Bubba Schweigert.

“Guys came in with good energy and some want-to, but we’re taking it day-by-day,” said Schweigert. “If we can get a little bit better at something each day, then we’ve had a good day.”

It’s been difficult for UND to conduct live sessions during the spring season because of a lack of numbers. There are approximately 65 players in the spring camp, and a lack of depth at some positions significantly increases the risk factor of going live.

Still, the controlled scrimmage — as brief as it was — gave the new UND coaching staff a better understanding of its personnel.

“That’s the first time we went live and it showed what we really need to work on,” said sophomore quarterback Ryan Bartels, one of four QBs that took snaps.

Schweigert, however, was pleased with some of the plays he and his first-year coaching staff witnessed.

“We made some good yards on the ground but I would have liked to see us protect the passer a little better,” he said. “But on defense we do a lot of different things so that’s an adjustment for the guys.

“And we wanted to tackle a little better; hopefully the next time we’ll be better at tackling.”

Highlights from the scrimmage:

  •  Senior linebacker Ben Peters was in on three tackles, including one for a five-yard loss when quarterback Joe Mollberg tried to escape the pocket.
  •  The hit of the scrimmage came from safety Cole Reyes, who leveled fullback Dwayne Pecosky. The hit came as Pecosky was attempting to haul in a pass from quarterback Jake Hanson.
  •  UND’s longest gain on the ground came from senior Jer Garman, who gained eight yards and 11 total on three carries. Backs P.J. Sparks, Adam Shaugabay and Patrick Sharp also were in on run plays.
  •  Hanson of Grafton completed 2-of-3 passes, both completions going for 10 yards.

The live sessions were only part of practice No. 11 during UND’s spring season. That also may have had an effect on the scrimmage.

“Next time we go live, we’ll do it from the start so we’ll probably have a better gauge of where we’re at,” said Schweigert.

Nelson reports on sports. Call him at (701) 780-1268, (800) 477-6572 ext. 1268 or send e-mail to

Wayne Nelson
Nelson is the sports editor of the Herald
(701) 780-1268