Notes and takeaways from the Arizona Wildcats’ media availability after their 12th practice of training camp Friday morning.
* UA coach Rich Rodriguez said he was happier with Arizona's practice performance on Saturday than from Friday. He said defense had the edge on the offense, but it has been pretty even throughout fall camp.
* Rodriguez said the defense had struggled forcing turnovers for much of camp, but forced a few on Saturday. On the flipside, Rodriguez said the offense has done a good job taking care of the ball and "I don’t know if we’ve dropped it on the ground at all as far as running," he said.
* Arizona alum Ricky Hunley — a College Football Hall of Famer and arguably the Wildcats' best linebacker of all time — was at Saturday's practice, and spent much of it chatting with fellow UA legend Chuck Cecil, now on Rodriguez's staff as a defensive analyst. Former UA receiver Samajie Grant was also at practice. "Ricky was obviously a great player here," Rodriguez said. "One of the three or four top players to ever play here."
* Rodriguez and special teams/defensive end coach Brian Knorr both alluded to the fact that freshmen defensive ends Jalen Harris and My-King Johnson are both talented but need to put on weight. Rodriguez said Harris is ahead of Johnson at the moment, and could contribute this season on special teams. On Johnson, Rodriguez said: "He’s been good. He’s a talented guy, obviously he’s gotta get bigger and stronger. But he’s been working hard...My-King is going to be a good player I think."
* On kick-offs, freshman kicker Lucas Havrisik has been kicking the ball "tremendously," Rodriguez said. Havrisik is pushing redshirt junior Josh Pollack for the field goal kicking job, but Pollack is still the favorite in that regard. Knorr mentioned that Pollack can punt too, as he did last season, but he'd prefer Pollack focus on his kicking duties while one of the others in competition — Matt Aragon and Jake Glatting — take over the punting job.
* Knorr's two primary areas of recruiting include the Inland Empire in Southern California, and North Dallas in Texas. About recruiting in the I.E., Knorr alluded that having running back J.J. Taylor — who prepped at Corona Centennial — has been beneficial. "You say the word J.J. out there and it gets everybody's attention," he said.