Tabuteau, a 5-10, 194-pound senior, appears to have beaten out senior safety Jon Lejiste for the spot. With several teams in the Big East running spread offenses, the Bulls plan on using a nickel package frequently in 2012. Lejiste started the last 25 games at USF, recording 90 tackles during that span.
Tabuteau appeared in four games in 2011 before suffering a season-ending back injury. The former Miles College (Ala.) defensive back had three tackles and two pass break-ups in 2011. In two seasons at the small school in Birmingham, Tabuteau posted 100 tackles, five interceptions, 11 pass break-ups, three forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries. Smith plans to use Lejiste as part of a safety rotation, the Times reported.
Injuries have limited senior defensive tackle Cory Grissom, sophomore defensive lineman Elkino Watson and sophomore defensive tackle Todd Chandler over the last week of practice. As a result, freshman defensive lineman James Hamilton has received added reps. Hamilton (6-2, 324) finished with three sacks, five forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries as a senior at Olympia High School (Fla.).
Five Scarlet Knights on Impact Freshman List: Rutgers topped all Big East teams on Athlon Sports' list of top impact freshman in the conference with five. Pittsburgh was next with three, Temple contributed two while Syracuse and Louisville were tied in fourth with one apiece.
Scarlet Knights defensive lineman Darius Hamilton could have the most impact of the group. There were some concerns about Hamilton's size (6-4, 260) heading into camp, but Hamilton has ameliorated them with his physical play over the last several weeks. Rutgers coach Kyle Flood has already moved Hamilton from defensive end to tackle.
Wide receiver Leonte Carroo may also be able to contribute immediately. Carroo flashed his speed in last Saturday's scrimmage on a 75-yard touchdown from quarterback Mike Bimonte. The other Scarlet Knights on the list are: kicker Kyle Federico and linebackers Steve Longo and Quanzell Lambert.Federico connected on field goals from 30, 31 and 40 yards in the scrimmage, but missed from 31, according to the Newark Star-Ledger.
Pitt running back Rushel Shell could assume a substantial role in the Panthers' backfield in his freshman season. Senior running back Ray Graham reportedly could miss the opener against Youngstown State, as he continues to recover from season-ending knee surgery. Defensive back Lafayette Pitts is battling for the starting cornerback position, while Chad Voytik provides depth at quarterback.
Temple freshman Zach Hooks has emerged as the Owls' starter at left tackle. Owls linebacker Nate Smith, the brother of former Philadelphia Eagles tight end L.J. Smith, could receive significant playing time at middle linebacker. At Syracuse, offensive lineman Kristofer Curtis could be thrust into the lineup if All-Big East First Team performer Justin Pugh (upper body) remains sidelined. Louisville freshman Keith Brown, one of the top linebackers in the class of 2012, has received first-team reps during camp.
Temple RB Harris doesn't regret actions at BC: In Montel Harris' first public comments since being kicked off Boston College's football team in May, the Owls' running back said he doesn't regret his actions that led to his dismissal.
“I don't regret anything, I think everything happens for a reason,” Harris told the Philadelphia Inquirer. “Everyone doesn't know what happened…The people who really need to know what's going on, they know what happened. We can go from there."
Harris, the all-time leading rusher at Boston College, is part of a formidable 1-2 duo with senior running back Matt Brown.
“We feed off of each other, he's high energy -- he keeps me going,” Harris told the Inquirer. “We are going to be able to make some big plays this year.”
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