Idaho's prep for Texas State begins

The Idaho football team had its first full practice in preparation for Texas State, and we've got notes to share with you after the jump. The Vandals (1-7) host the Bobcats (5-3) on Saturday at 2 p.m. at the Kibbie Dome. Texas State, a Sun Belt team that easily handled Idaho last year in San Marcos, is a 10-point favorite.


-- Taylor Davis got most of the time with the first-team offense and is line to get his second straight start at quarterback. Josh McCain (shoulder) was suited up but wore a red jersey to denote his injured status, while Chad Chalich (shoulder) was not in pads. Matt Linehan, Davis' backup, also saw time with the first team in addition to his regular scout-team duties. "He took reps with the ones last week, too. If something happens, he’s got to be ready to go," coach Paul Petrino said of the true freshman. Davis, meanwhile, struggled with his accuracy in the latter portion of practice. He's completed just 37.7 of his passes (26 of 69) this season after replacing Chalich.

-- Defensive end Quinton Bradley (shoulder) didn't participate in team activities, but he worked out on his own during practice. Bradley, the Vandals' best pass rusher, has been injured off and on for much of the year.

-- Offensive tackle Jesse Davis (knee) watched practices on crutches and a brace around his right knee. To my knowledge, Petrino has not given specifics about his injury. Guard Dallas Sandberg (undisclosed injury) also sat out again.

-- Brett Ballard was the Vandals' long-snapper at Ole Miss after Marius Burgsmueller injured his hand. Burgsmueller is still available to play defensive end, as he did last week, but Petrino praised Ballard's snapping.

-- Petrino was pleased with the team's performance in practice. He said UI has spent more time than usual with the first teams going against each other to prepare for Texas State's read option offense. "I thought our guys came out with a lot of fire today. Because of what they do offensively, you need a fast look, so we actually went a lot of one-on-ones today. It was good. It was good for both sides of the ball. We got a lot of fast looks. Sometimes we were running their plays and sometimes they were doing what they do on defense. I thought the energy was real (good). We’ve got to do that two more days in a row."


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