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Epps, Olugbode star in Idaho’s second spring scrimmage

Dezmon Epps and Deon Watson had huge receiving days. Kris Olugbode churned out yards on the ground. And Irving Steele made his presence felt at linebacker.

Epps, Watson and Olugbode were three of several offensive standouts for the Idaho football team on Friday, which held its second scrimmage of spring practice at the Kibbie Dome.

After converted receiver Josh McCain put up big numbers in the first scimmage last week, Epps had the spotlight on Friday with 17 catches for 218 yards and four touchdowns. Watson, a redshirt sophomore from Coeur d'Alene, had nine catches for 170 yards and two TDs, while McCain went for seven catches for 73 yards.

Olugbode rushed for 200 of Idaho's 321 yards. And once again, redshirt freshman quarterback Matt Linehan attempted significantly more passes than Chad Chalich. Linehan was 33 of 52 for 401 yards, but Chalich (18 of 32 for 304) squeezed more yards out of his attempts.

Steele, a JC newcomer, had 18 tackles, matching cornerback Jayshawn Jordan's total. Zach Cable had four tackles for loss.

More below.


The Vandals have seven days left in spring ball. They'll scrimmage next Saturday at 10 a.m. and hold their Silver and Gold game on April 25.

Here's the full recap from Idaho media relations:

MOSCOW, Idaho – There were more gaudy numbers by the University of Idaho but in the ebb and flow of the Vandals’ second scrimmage of the spring, coach Paul Petrino saw some highlights from the defense as well.

“There were some great things,” said Petrino after the offense netted 1,026 yards and 14 touchdowns during the Friday afternoon session at the Kibbie Dome. “Our offense started out really, really good. They went up and down the field; scored a bunch.

“Then we re-grouped on defense and we had some stops. They were playing better, making some plays.”

Offensively, big playmakers were in abundance with sophomore Chad Chalich completing 18 of 32 passes for 304 yards and redshirt freshman Matt Linehan connecting on 33 of 52 for 401 yards. Linehan threw eight touchdowns and Chalich had three. On the receiving end, three players eclipsed the 100-yard mark with senior Dezmon Epps catching 17 for 218 yards, sophomore Deon Watson grabbing nine for 170 and sophomore Richard Montgomery, who splits time at running back, grabbing four for 104. The leader on the ground was senior Kristoffer Olugbode with 200 yards on 23 carries. Jerrel Brown, also a senior, had 30 for 90 yards.

While it took a while for the defense to get rolling, Petrino saw some things he liked as the scrimmage progressed.

“I thought the second half was pretty even,” he said. “That’s what you want to see. We made some strides. They’re definitely improved.”

Defensively, newcomer Irving Steele had 18 tackles from his linebacker position and junior Jayshawn Jordan had 18 as a corner. Sophomore Zach Cable had three sacks and a total four tackles for loss.

“Overall, walking off the field,” Petrino said, “I felt good. We have some guys who are really playing hard. There was a lot of hitting; a lot of big-time plays. We’re a lot better now. We have two  more weeks to get even better.”

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Jim Allen Sports reporter Jim Allen's primary coverage areas are Eastern Washington University football and men's basketball, and college and high school soccer. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Jacob Thorpe Sports reporter Jacob Thorpe covers Washington State University athletics. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Greg Lee Greg Lee covers high school sports in Eastern Washington and North Idaho. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Jim Meehan Jim Meehan's coverage areas include Gonzaga University men's basketball, Spokane Shock football, golf and volleyball. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Chris Derrick Chris Derrick is a sports reporter. His primary coverage areas are the Spokane Chiefs, Spokane Indians, women's basketball and high school softball and volleyball. He also contributes to the SportsLink Blog.

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Josh Wright Josh Wright is a freelance correspondent who covers the University of Idaho football team and men's basketball team.

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