August 22, 2008

Illness no match for Jones in scrimmage

The cornerbacks and safeties weren't the only thing Mike Jones was battling during Thusday night's scrimmage.

The senior wide receiver also has a pretty bad case of the flu, which makes his four catch performance that much more spectacular.

"He's been sick for the last week or so, so for him to come out, I just thought it was great of Mike," Rudy Carpenter said. "Mike is a great player. I love Mike and he works hard. He gives everything he has all the time."

Jones was ASU's top wide receiver in the scrimmage, and with a performance like that some of his teammates want the same bug Jones has.

"If I can make those kinds of catches when I'm sick then show me where I sign because I want it too," Kyle Williams said.

Carpenter joked, "I hope I can get that virus."

Filling in

With Rodney Cox sidelined with back spasms, Max Tabach got the start Thursday night.

James Brooks (ankle) did not play, moving Lawrence Guy to second team left defensive end.

Chris McGaha was still nursing his sore toe -- coach Dennis Erickson said McGaha could have played if it were a real game -- so Kerry Taylor moved out to the flanker position from the slot to open the game. ASU's first play was run from a two tight end set so there was not a slot receiver. Andrew Pettes and Jovon Williams were the starting tight ends.

Other players not suited up for action were Brandon Smith (hamstring), Nate Kimbrough (eye), Shaun DeWitty (hamstring), Steven Figueroa (toe), Matt Hustad (knee) and AJ Pickens (NCAA Clearinghouse issue).

Fumbles

Ryan Bass looks like he will be an incredibly good running back for the Sun Devils…when he can be counted on to not fumble the ball.

Throughout the fall, Bass has had issues with ball security and those issues resurfaced Thursday night.

Bass fumbled the ball after receiving a screen pass from Danny Sullivan as he was about to run downfield.

Last week Erickson said in his view Bass' ball security was not an issue, but the problem does not seem to be going away.

Besides the fumble, Bass had a solid performance in the scrimmage; he rushing four times for 24 yards and hauling in three receptions for 16 yards.

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