Practice players of the week
Posted by ESPN.com's Ted Miller
Those camp legs are setting in. But the games also are getting closer.
Who is fighting through the pain and keeping his eyes on the prize?
We have this week's Pac-10 Practice Players of the Week. These are based on reports from program insiders and news accounts.
Receiver Juron Criner. Criner, a 6-foot-4, 215-pound sophomore, has proven to be one of the team's most improved players after being a reserve as a true freshman. He has made catches all over the field with consistency and has challenged senior Terrell Turner for a starting job.
Receiver Gerell Robinson. A coach at Arizona State tried to get the entire Sun Devils receiving corps this award, but the Pac-10 blog is nothing but inflexible. So hearing that Robinson, a touted 2008 recruit who struggled last year, is the team's "most improved player" earned him this week's honor.
Linebacker Mychal Kendricks. The 6-foot, 230-pound sophomore was supposed to be good, and he's living up to high expectations during camp, nailing down one of the Bears two inside linebacker spots
Center Jordan Holmes. Coach Chip Kelly calls Holmes "a real warrior." Holmes stepped in for All-Conference lineman Max Unger and has being a key leader for a unit that is rebuilding. He has not missed a snap this preseason.
Offensive lineman Grant Johnson. Johnson is a sophomore walk-on from Baker City, Ore. He's played just about every O-line position during the preseason, but he's now the frontrunner to start at left guard. Johnson has come out of nowhere to earn consideration for playing time.
Linebacker Chike Amajoyi. Amajoyi didn't live up to high expectations in 2008 but he's having as good a camp as any of the Stanford linebackers.
Receiver Ricky Marvray. Marvray, a true freshman, is battling for a spot in the rotation and makes at least one great play a day, according to head coach Rick Neuheisel.
Receiver De'Von Flournoy: While USC is incredibly open with the media, but it also has a policy of discouraging interviews with true freshmen, at least during preseason camp. That is unless they are competing for immediate playing time, see quarterback Matt Barkley. So it is meaningful that Flournoy, who's made numerous big plays in camp, met with reporters this week.
Running back Johri Fogerson. Fogerson, a sophomore, moved back from safety to tailback this offseason. He starred in Wednesday's scrimmage with six runs for 48 yards, two receptions for 58 yards and a 50-yard punt return. It seems that he and Chris Polk are the top two tailbacks.
Defensive tackle Bernard Wolfgramm. This is a big one for Cougars fans. Wolfgramm has battled a persistent back injury for over a year but is showing signs of turning the corner with his play. If healthy, he could help plug the middle of the Cougs defense.
3:00 PM ET Colorado Massachusetts 3:00 PM ET Fresno State Utah 3:00 PM ET Sacramento State California 3:05 PM ET Eastern Washington 25 Washington 3:30 PM ET 15 USC 11 Stanford 6:30 PM ET 8 Michigan State 3 Oregon 7:00 PM ET 19 Arizona State New Mexico 10:00 PM ET Memphis 7 UCLA 10:30 PM ET Oregon State Hawaii