Originally posted on Fox Sports Arizona  |  Last updated 9/6/12
TEMPE, Ariz. -- Though Illinois coach Tim Beckman is not expected to name his starting quarterback before Saturday's game, ASU is preparing for banged up junior Nathan Scheelhaase. Scheelhaase, the regular starter for the Illini, left the team's win over Western Michigan last week with an ankle injury. He practiced Wednesday and was said to be improving. Beckman told reporters he would decide after Thursday's practice if Scheelhaase or a backup -- sophomore Reilly O'Toole or junior Osei Miles -- would start Saturday, but Illinois did not have media availability Thursday. "There's no uncertainty on my part," ASU coach Todd Graham said. "I'm going to prepare for their best quarterback, and there's no question in my mind that that's the guy. He's the best, and we wish him the best. I did not think when I watched it that he couldn't continue to play. So I feel pretty certain he'll play. "I haven't tried to research, I haven't tried to look at it, I'm not worried about it. You better prepare for him to play, because he's obviously their quarterback. He's the best quarterback on the team, so you prepare for him. What does it do if he doesn't play? You're not any less prepared." MAGEE MISSES PRACTICE ASU linebacker Brandon Magee did not practice Thursday due to an undisclosed injury. Graham said the redshirt senior was held out of the team's final practice before playing Illinois on Saturday as a precaution. Graham said only that Magee "got a little ding." Magee, who had two tackles and returned an interception for a touchdown last week, left practice a few minutes early Wednesday and left the field Thursday after early stretching. Graham gave no indication Magee would miss Saturday's game. "We're just being cautious with him, so that's all we've got there," Graham said. Magee did not speak to reporters after Thursday's practice. LINEBACKER SHUFFLE Graham said Thursday that he expects redshirt junior linebacker Anthony Jones to start at sam linebacker Saturday. Previous sam starter Steffon Martin will shift to starting Devilbacker, while Carl Bradford will move to second-team Devilbacker. "Anthony is just at a point where he's such a good athlete," Graham said. "His biggest thing is just mental development and then learning our system and how we do things. I think he's ready." Earlier in the week, Graham said he considers Jones, Martin and Bradford all starters, and he said Thursday that Bradford and Martin will likely split snaps at Devilbacker. Graham praised Jones as one of ASU's best 11 defensive players more than once during the week and said he expected Jones to work his way into the starting lineup. Jones dealt with knee and shoulder injuries during fall camp. "It's been up and down, but I'm here now," Jones said, "so all I can do is compete and just keep the job where I'm at." Jones is also a fallback option for ASU at safety in the event the secondary suffers another injury.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Logan Morrison curses out umpire CB Bucknor mid at-bat

Raptors jab Bucks on Twitter after Game 4 victory

Report: NBA GMs not hesitant to draft Lonzo Ball due to father LaVar

DeShone Kizer changes course, stands by Tom Brady-Cam Newton quote

Nick Saban doesn't offer much praise of team for 'adequate' spring game

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Dennis Schroder admits Mike Budenholzer wants him to avoid trash talk

WATCH: Miguel Sano throws punch as benches clear in Twins-Tigers game

Glen Coffee making NFL comeback after four years in Army, seven years away from game

Fan wears Clemson championship gear to Alabama spring game

NBA reportedly investigating incident involving Patrick Beverley, Thunder fan

Blake Griffin out for the season with toe injury; how screwed are the Clippers?

The 'It's not good to play the King' quiz

Best of Yardbarker: David Fizdale and the Grizzlies won't go down quietly

Three Up, Three Down: Home run hitters are heating up

The 'Even the Browns can't mess this one up' quiz

25 times Mother Nature disrupted sports

In some ways, Dan Rooney was just another NFL owner

Box Score 4/20: When Westbrook isn't enough

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

The '♫Happy Birthday Simpsons. Simpsons, it's your birthday♫' quiz

White House championship visits over the years

Biggest needs in the draft for every NFL team

The 'Baseball has been very, very good to its players' quiz

College Football News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The 'It's not good to play the King' quiz

Three Up, Three Down: Home run hitters are heating up

The 'Even the Browns can't mess this one up' quiz

In some ways, Dan Rooney was just another NFL owner

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

The '♫Happy Birthday Simpsons. Simpsons, it's your birthday♫' quiz

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: David Fizdale calls B.S.

Kris Bryant can become the next Derek Jeter — and more

The 'Baseball has been very, very good to its players' quiz

NHL youth movement: How the 2016-17 rookie class fared

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker