SP football practice report for Tuesday: Sun Devil defense starting to form

The secondary clamped down on the wide receivers in 11-on-11

Practice for Sun Devil football resumed Tuesday with media viewing three periods of practice.

Gold jerseys were seen for the first time this season as players arrived to the field. The jersey colors signify scout players in their respective positions. 

The quarterbacks started their practice as they always do with the quarterback/center exchange. Redshirt senior Manny Wilkins and junior center Cohl Cabral worked as the first team. Sophomore running back Eno Benjamin joined them on handoff exchanges.

Second teams featured sophomore quarterback Kurt Walding and redshirt sophomore Dillon Sterling-Cole taking snaps from freshman offensive lineman Jarrett Bell and redshirt junior Cade Cote

Offensive coordinator Rob Likens ensured that running backs were taking snaps seriously as the season steadily approaches.

“Different cut every time visualize the hole,” Likens said. 

In addition, offensive line coach Dave Christensen and Likens made sure the centers were working on finishing in the right spot with blocks.

The special teams worked on field goal returns in different scenarios after breaking off into individual position groups. 

Running backs coach John Simon talked to the kick returners about communicating with his blockers.

Simon wanted to ensure that junior wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk and redshirt sophomore running back Isaiah Floyd didn’t make mistakes this upcoming season.

The defense also worked on punt returns after Simon talked to the returners about calling out for the ball. 

The first team offense moved to the second field for 11-on-11:

  • QB: Manny Wilkins 
  • RB: Eno Benjamin
  • WR: N’Keal Harry, Kyle Williams, Brandon Aiyuk
  • TE: Ceejhay French-Love
  • OL: Casey Tucker (LT), Alex Losoya (LG), Cade Cote (C), Zach Robertson, (RG), Quinn Bailey (RT)

First team defense:

  • DL: Dougladson Subtyl, Renell Wren, Jalen Bates 
  • LB: Malik Lawal, Merlin Robertson, Darien Butler,
  • DBs: Langston Frederick, Chase Lucas, Dasmond Tautalatasi, Kobe Williams, K.J. Jarrell

Wilkins and the wide receivers were not in sync as Harry dropped a pass, and a few throws were behind Williams and redshirt junior Ryan Newsome

Wilkins' pocket presence gave him enough time to make a decision as the O-line continued to protect him.

Both sides broke off and returned to drills to fix kinks and techniques. The linebacker core worked on shedding blocks and form tackling.


In the middle of the field, linebackers coach Antonio Pierce wanted his players to finish and run their opponents over.

Defensive line coach Shaun Nua had his players down a 3-point stance, making them fight through a mock o-lineman’s hands to reach the backfield, before the media had to leave the practice field.


Other Notes: Cohl Cabral participated in 11-on-11 after his knee injury held him out of 11-on-11’s the past week. Redshirt junior Steven Miller was in street clothes today.


Reach the reporter at sbemanue@asu.edu or follow @SebastianEman5 on Twitter. 

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