During camps and spring balls, the UND football program often prioritizes repetitions in team settings for younger players needing that experience. The youth can also shoulder some of the physical wear the more proven players don't need to collect.
On Friday morning, nearing the end of camp, players such as cornerback Evan Holm, outside linebacker Jaxson Turner and safety Jordan Canady made plays during team workouts.
As the team ramps up preparation for the season opener next Saturday at home against Southern Illinois, those three offered a reminder that sometimes during camp it's easy to lose sight in the excitement of young talent blossoming that it's still your established players you'll really be relying on come Week 1.
During early team work, Holm's blanket coverage forced quarterback Tommy Schuster to hold the ball. That resulted in Schuster getting flushed from the pocket by a would-be sack by Turner.
Shortly after, Turner busted into the backfield again to disrupt a handoff for Creighton Mitchell.
Later in team drills, Canady came up from his safety spot in run support to fill a gap on an Isaiah Smith run up the middle.
Holm, who played in four games last year but utilized a redshirt due to injuries, will be a super-senior expected to start at corner. He's played in 31 career games and has three interceptions.
Turner is a senior expecting to start at outside linebacker. He's played in 32 career games and has 11 career sacks.
Canady is a fifth-year senior with 32 career games under his belt. The expected starter at safety has five career interceptions.
Here are the details from Day 18:
The scene: UND practiced in full pads from about 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. at the High Performance Center.
Play of the day: During skelly drills, true freshman wide receiver Bo Belquist made a finger-tip catch on a long bomb from junior college transfer quarterback Ethan Postler.
Looking good: Hayden Reynolds continues to make plays at inside linebacker. The West Fargo Sheyenne product had back-to-back plays in team drills in which he would've faced a collision with the running back right after handoff.
Needs work: The temperature outside the High Performance Center.
Day 18 notes
- It was perhaps an unlikely big day for fullback Brett Finke. Known more for his run blocking, Finke made a few nice snags through the air, including a Quincy Vaughn well-placed out route during team drills.
- During his reps at inside linebacker, rookie Kason Kelley has made some notable plays. He's perhaps still deep on the depth chart, but he's a name to keep tabs on moving forward.
- UND's offense showed more power run looks when 6-foot-4, 240-pound quarterback Quincy Vaughn is in the game. The looks were similar to what last year's quarterback, Nate Ketteringham, often found success with while running the ball.
- Center Nathan Nguon made a couple of nice blocks in team work that earned the congratulations of offensive line coach Joe Pawlak.
- Ty Shannon, a safety-turned-linebacker, continues to show glimpses of pass rush prowess. He might've sacked Quincy Vaughn late in practice if contact was live.
- Cornerback Sammy Fort stood out with a couple of pass breakups.
- Young defensive end Tanner Thorsness of Bismarck Century was disruptive in team work.