DEFENSE STANDS OUT IN FOOTBALL'S SECOND SPRING SCRIMMAGE
April 13, 2013
MARTIN, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee at Martin football team held its second scrimmage of the spring this morning during its 11th practice, with the defense putting together a mostly dominant performance over the course of the day.
The Skyhawk defense tallied a pair of interceptions, two fumble recoveries and four sacks on the day. The hard-nosed UT Martin defensive unit even produced a touchdown, as rising sophomore Deantae Glover took a fumble back 30 yards for a score during the offense’s 18th drive.
Leon Carlton III and Camaren Harris each snagged interceptions, while Corey Rogers led the defensive line with a pair of sacks. Marquis Clemons registered a sack and forced fumble, while Ben Johnson (forced fumble), Dean Wathen (fumble recovery), Tony Bell (fumble recovery), Walter Evans (half-sack), Keith Jones (half-sack) and Marcus Sease (two tackles for loss, two pass break-ups) provided several big plays defensively.
Of the 94 plays ran today by the UT Martin offense, the defense was responsible for 18 plays for negative yardage. Overall, 36 of UT Martin’s 94 plays went for three yards or less.
“It was good to see our defense forcing some turnovers,” UT Martin head coach Jason Simpson said. “They brought a lot of energy today and I was proud of that. We were missing two offensive tackles today and we put our quarterbacks in jerseys today so it was the first chance for them to get hit. Our offense couldn’t ever get into a rhythm but a lot of that was because of our speed on defense.”
The Skyhawk offense amassed 447 total yards (222 passing, 225 rushing) and three touchdowns. UT Martin did hit five plays of 25-plus yards, including a 90-yard rush by Trent Garland and a 57-yard rush by Najee Ray.
Tyler Rice, Jarod Neal and Dylan Favre combined to complete 21 passes today. Rice connected with Chris Thompson on a 40-yard touchdown pass on a 3rd-and-15 play while Neal fired a nine-yard touchdown to Jeremy Butler in the second-to-last drive of the day.
Thompson’s 77 yards on three receptions led the wide receivers, while Drew Thomas caught a team-high four passes for 53 yards.
Ray’s 12 carries led the offense, as the redshirt freshman out of Paris tallied 91 yards. Garland recorded a team-best 117 yards on only eight carries while DJ McNeil was responsible for a touchdown, set up by a remarkable 25-yard one-handed sliding catch by Butler.
On special teams, James Satterfield and Ben Axline combined to punt seven times for an average of 37.6 yards per punt. Satterfield accounted for the longest punt of the day, a 47-yard punt from deep in his own territory. Jackson Redditt connected on his only field goal attempt of the day – a 27-yarder that wrapped up the scrimmage.
UT Martin will hold its final four practices of the spring this week, with dates tentatively set for Tuesday (April 16th), Wednesday (April 17th), Friday (April 19th) and Saturday (April 20th). The annual Spring Game will take place on Saturday, April 20 at 10 a.m.
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