DENNIS ODA / DODA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Tyler Graunke improved his chances of winning UH's starting quarterback job with his effort so far in spring practice.
Graunke back in the race
Tyler Graunke was elevated to 1A status yesterday in the Warriors quarterback race as the senior took the first snaps in seven-on-seven and team drills. Inoke Funaki, the No. 1 quarterback in the six previous practices, received equal reps with Graunke as the two alternated every snap.
Graunke is trying to regain his status as the favorite to succeed Colt Brennan, which he held prior to spring practice before a suspension for violating team rules.
"I'm just trying to get better and get everyone else better," he said. "I have a lot more goals -- earn everyone's respect back, that's my first goal -- and be a team player. Not trying to do too much, and just doing my thing. I feel like that's going pretty well."
Senior safety Keao Monteilh intercepted Graunke on the first play of both head-to-head segments of practice.
Still, coach Greg McMackin liked what he saw. He said he planned to integrate the shotgun snap starting tomorrow, after pushing its debut back from yesterday. The practice did mark a thinning of offensive rotations, especially at quarterback; Shane Austin and Jake Santos were held to a handful of looks late in drills.
"We're at a point where we have to start recognizing, especially on offense, who's going to be in the ballgames," McMackin said. "We're going to get more specific and prep the first two (offensive) units more. Get the timing down for the rest of spring, and probably play the top three teams on the defensive side."