Ducks hold first spring scrimmage

(Photo by Dave O'Shea)

Oregon conducted the first scrimmage of the spring workouts on Saturday under cloudy skies. Kellen Taylor, the junior wide receiver had the highlight of the day with a 40-yard touchdown reception from Kellen Clemens' pass. Taylor had five receptions for 78 yards in the afternoon work.

Overall the scrimmage was typical of a first contact scrimmage in a spring work out. The hitting was soft and the play was spotty. Both the offense and defense had moments of good play and no so good play. The offensive line seemed ragged at times, but considering it was the first scrimmage in April, the performance was not unexpected. The team was in full pads and during the scrimmage the defense was allowed to tackle the quarterbacks.

(PHOTO RIGHT) Kellen Clemens throws a pass during a scrimmage at Autzen Stadium on April 12, 2003 in Eugene, Oregon. (PHOTO BY DAVE O'SHEA)

"I felt it was real soft out there today on both sides of the ball," said senior safety Keith Lewis. "We've really got to pick up the hitting through the rest of spring practice."

Taylor has looked good throughout the spring and he appeared very excited about wearing the green and yellow and showing what he has. Even when he did not make a play, his effort level was very good.

"Getting in here on the first scrimmage of the year, I was glad I could make some plays and get into the end zone," said Taylor.

One area of concern has been senior leadership and returning senior defensive end Quinn Dorsey may add the extra maturity the Ducks need next fall. Dorsey sat out last year due to injury and he looks forward to being a contributor next September. Dorsey had one quarterback sack and forced the quarterback to throw quickly on several plays.

"It is great to get back out after being off for a year," remarked Dorsey. "I hope I can be a leader in this defense."

(PHOTO LEFT) Duck senior defensive end Quinn Dorsey makes his presence felt by sacking quarterback Jason Fife during an Oregon scrimmage at Autzen Stadium on April 12, 2003, in Eugene Oregon. (PHOTO BY DAVE O'SHEA)

Redshirt freshman running back Chris Vincent, 6-1, 219, had a one-yard touchdown late in the scrimmage. Vincent was very active during practice and used his strength to get extra yardage during his runs. Vincent, was recruited heavily by Oregon a year ago but signed a letter of intent with LSU. After attending the fall camp at LSU, Vincent decided to transfer to Oregon and sat out last season but was allowed to participate on the scout team. Part of his role on the scout team was to impersonate opposing runners the Ducks would face. This season though, Vincent is ready to go.

"After running other team's offense (scout team) for a year, it was nice to run our stuff," said Vincent. "But we still have a long way to go."

Other notes, Keith Allen ran two reverses for considerable gains and was aided in his efforts by blocks for senior quarterback Jason Fife. Fife was six-for-11 passing for 60 yards and one fumble. Fife led two drives to field goal attempts. Clemens was eight-for-12 passing and 96 yards and one touchdown. True freshman Johnny DuRocher was one-for-four and 10 yards. Senior linebacker Jerry Madson and sophomore rover Demetrius Spates both showed good speed from their defensive positions. Madson ran down running back Terrance Whitehead from behind on one play. Spates was able to get into the offensive backfield to disrupt the execution of the play. Sophomore tight end Tim Day also had three receptions for 33 yards.

(PHOTO RIGHT) Junior receiver Kellen Taylor (80) tumbles out of bounds during an Oregon spring scrimmage held at Autzen Stadium on April 12, 2003, in Eugene, Oregon. (PHOTO BY DAVE O'SHEA)

Oregon Head Coach Mike Bellotti felt the practice was typical and not unexpected though he wants to see a greater intensity from his team.

"I wasn't happy with the hitting today," said Bellotti. "I don't want to have to watch the game to know there was a hit, I want to hear it."

Practice will continue through May 3rd, when the annual spring game will be played at Autzen Stadium.

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