There is still a chance Juwan Johnson could be running pass patterns Saturday night at Autzen Stadium, and Brenden Schooler has started running again with the hope of returning early in Pac-12 play.
No. 15 Oregon’s depleted wide receiving corps is on the mend entering the Montana game.
Coach Mario Cristobal said after Wednesday’s practice that Johnson’s status remains “day to day,” but tight end Cam McCormick will not play.
“We’re going to make a decision more towards Friday, Saturday, see how (Johnson’s) doing,” Cristobal said. “Cam is a little bit behind him. I think Cam will be more of a next week decision.”
The Ducks (1-1) open Pac-12 play Sept. 21 at Stanford.
Schooler, who underwent surgery on a broken foot during fall camp, is making significant progress. True freshman receiver Mycah Pittman remains out indefinitely with a shoulder injury.
“That’s encouraging that he’s on schedule, a little bit ahead of schedule,” Cristobal said of Schooler.
With all of the injuries at receiver, Oregon’s offense has adapted with four players listed as tight ends — Spencer Webb, Jacob Breeland, Ryan Bay and Hunter Kampmoyer — catching touchdown passes.
Backup offensive lineman Brady Aiello also caught a touchdown pass from the tight end position during the 77-6 victory over Nevada.
“We're even missing Cam McCormick right now, who's probably one of the best out of the entire group,” left guard Shane Lemieux said. “It's just adding a little different key to our offense that we didn't really have in the previous years and taking advantage of a really deep position in the tight end room.”
Oregon is also dealing with a sudden loss of depth at placekicker with Adam Stack opting to transfer this week and Zach Emerson facing charges of criminal mischief in the second degree and criminal trespass in the first degree following a recent arrest.
True freshman Camden Lewis is the only placekicker listed on the depth chart this week, but Cristobal praised Henry Katleman, a redshirt freshman walk-on from Topanga, Calif.
“Zach is away from the team while he’s handling some personal matters,” Cristobal said. “Really feel good about Cam and also Henry Cattleman, who has come on as a walk-on and done a great job. He’s only been kicking for a couple years, but he’s a pretty neat story. He’s got a powerful leg and he’s been really good and really effective in his field goal tries and really kicking off well.
“We feel comfortable with the depth there.”
Oregon’s kickoff for the nonconference finale against Montana on Saturday at Autzen is a late one — 7:45 p.m. on the Pac-12 Networks.
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