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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Terrell or Terrell at receiver?

    UA receivers Terrell Turner, left, and Terrell Reese have been catching many balls during spring practice. The starting wide receiver position opposite Mike Thomas is up for grabs for the duo.
    UA receivers Terrell Turner, left, and Terrell Reese have been catching many balls during spring practice. The starting wide receiver position opposite Mike Thomas is up for grabs for the duo.

    Near the end of every practice, the Arizona quarterbacks line up side by side and take turns lofting footballs into a plastic garbage can 20 yards away.

    Far from ridding them of old, unwanted equipment, the exercise reflects the Wildcats’ intention to have wide receivers fight defenders for touchdowns in the back corners of the end zone this season.

    Right now, the quarterbacks try to land their throws as close to the 3-foot openings as possible – “”Because, you know, these trash cans are kind of small,”” said quarterback Willie Tuitama.

    By the fall, however, the hands of either Terrell Reese or Terrell Turner are going to take their place.

    “”The thing is that they’re both fast enough – and big, you know, so we can throw it up to them. Especially in this offense, because we take shots downfield and everything,”” Tuitama said. “”For them to come up in plays will be big.””

    So far, it’s been difficult to find much distinction between Reese and Turner. Besides sharing the same first name, both players are Texas natives battling for the outside wide receiver position opposite Mike Thomas. Both stand at least 6-foot-2 and can run the 40-yard dash between 4.4 and 4.5 seconds.

    But despite their potential to help an offense that will lean heavily on the passing game, only one will see major playing time in the fall.

    “”They continue to work hard. They’ve showed that they can play and deserve playing time,”” said Darrell Wyatt, Arizona’s wide receivers coach and passing game coordinator. “”But certainly, one guy will establish himself as the starter.””

    Both receivers acquitted themselves well in the team’s March 31 intrasquad scrimmage at Arizona Stadium. Turner, a sophomore, started with the first team and had three catches for 31 yards, while Reese, a redshirt freshman, led all wideouts with 65 receiving yards, 45 of which came on the day’s longest offensive play.

    Wyatt has diagnosed distinct areas of improvements for Reese and Turner this offseason.

    “”Obviously, with Terrell Turner, he’s very smooth, has tremendous footwork, lots of savvy,”” he said. “”He’s a guy that needs to get a little bigger, a little stronger, and he’s already made strides with (strength) coach (Corey) Edmond.

    “”Terrell Reese (is) a big, strong, athletic guy who really needs to learn the nuances of playing the wide receiver position. He’s an athlete, played a number of positions in high school and really didn’t concentrate on playing wide receiver, so he still has a ways in terms of developing fundamentals.””

    UA head coach Mike Stoops is confident that if anyone can channel the young players’ potential, it’s Wyatt. While the wide receivers coach at Oklahoma from 2002-2005, he helped turn receivers Mark Bradley, Mark Clayton and Brandon Jones into NFL draft picks.

    “”Shoot, Mark Clayton couldn’t bench 120 pounds when he got there, and then he became a first-round draft pick,”” Stoops said. “”That’s a big thing, with your motivating your players, and he does a good job of developing young players.””

    Reese and Turner get another shot at standing out in Saturday’s Spring Game, which marks the end of the team’s organized activity until the summer.

    Reese said he’s kept his eye on the starting job, but the competition is going to remain friendly.

    “”Me and (Turner), we’re basically two of the same. We share some of the same attributes and the same qualities,”” he said. “”Either one of us could (go) in and get the job done.””

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