The Nevada Wolf Pack played their annual Silver and Blue Spring Game this past Saturday. The game is played as a conclusion to the five weeks of practice for the Wolf Pack.
Head coach Jay Norvell has a different approach to the game compared to other coaches. The Blue Team is composed of the first team offense and defense. The Silver Team has everybody else and starts the game with a 27-0 lead. An important note is that many of the recruits that committed to Nevada this offseason were not in the game, as they are not enrolled at the university yet.
The Blue Team offensive was missing two key players. Offensive lineman Sean Krepsz was on the sidelines on a scooter with his foot in a boot. Wide receiver Kaleb Fossum was alongside him with his left knee in a brace as he was still recovering from his dislocated knee suffered in last season’s opener against Northwestern.
Ty Gangi led the Blue offense with most of his returning weapons from last season. Gangi did not seem to miss a beat connecting with his favorite target, McLane Mannix, who caught two touchdowns. The other two touchdowns Gangi threw were both brought down by 6’4” Elijah Cooks who returns to the field after his stint with the Nevada Basketball team. Gangi struggled to connect with the other 6’4” receiver, Brendan O’Leary-Orange, whom he overthrew multiple times on deep throws down the field. Gangi threw one interception that was returned for a touchdown, which seems to happen in every game for Nevada quarterbacks. The pick six was the only score for the Silver Team. Running back Kelton Moore looked solid behind Gangi as he had 11 carries for 71 yards and a touchdown that sealed the victory for the Blue Team.
The Blue defense was very stout. They did not give up a single point and consistently had the Silver offensive line under duress. Malik Reed was convincing in his first appearance at linebacker since his move from the defensive line at the start of spring practice.
The Silver Team on the other hand, leaves a lot of questions for Norvell. Although Ty Gangi is the no doubt no. 1 quarterback on the roster, his backup is much tougher to determine. Both Kaymen Cureton and Griffin Dahn had shaky games. Both threw interception and could not sustain a drive. Cureton showed virtually no progression as he seemed to start running any time he was under pressure just like in his two starts last season. Dahn looked unsettled which may be attributed to him missing much of last season after getting surgery on his ankle and not having virtually any on-field experience since coming to Nevada. The silver lining, no pun intended, for the Silver Team was a fully healthy Jaxson Kincaide. Kincaide got the most carries out of all the running backs on the roster and although his stat line may not have showed it, he looks like he trusts his knee again.
The Silver defense looked woeful trying to stop the Blue Offense. It gave up 5 touchdowns and it looked clear from the beginning that they had no chance. Other than the interception, the Silver defense did force a fumble that slowed the momentum of the Blue offense for a brief moment.
What does this mean? Not much. Starters should be outplaying their back ups, that is the reason why they start. No one knows how this team is going to perform next season, especially with many key guys not playing or even in school yet. One thing that is different this season is that Norvell’s offense is going to be the best part of the team, and he has a quarterback he can trust from the start. The Wolf Pack’s offense and defense will have their first real test when the season starts in August.