Hot Stove News As Baseball Nears

The University of Alabama baseball team returned to campus with the first day of classes Wednesday and the team began individual drills, leading up to the first day of practice in three weeks.

The Crimson Tide will conduct individual drills Monday through Friday from 1:45 to 3:30 p.m. at Sewell-Thomas Stadium. Under new NCAA guidelines teams will have a uniform start date for practices and games. The first day of practice is set for Friday, February 1. The 2008 season opener is set for Friday, February 22, against Cal Poly.

"We had a good break and now it's time to get back to work as we get ready for the season," Alabama Coach Jim Wells said. "We had a very good fall and made a lot of improvements. We still have some work to do and that is what these next few weeks will allow us to do before getting into the team work and scrimmages in February."

Wells also announced that Assistant Coach B.J. Green has been placed on administrative leave due to health reasons and that Volunteer Coach Dax Norris has been named interim assistant coach.

Norris will continue to work with the Tide hitters and catchers and assist Wells with the pitching staff. Assistant Coach Mitch Gaspard, who serves as the recruiting coordinator, will work with the hitters, infielders and outfielders this spring.

Drew French has been added to the staff as the volunteer coach.

Wells also announced three roster changes for the spring semester. Junior infielder Cole Shelton, junior left-hand pitcher Jason Garner and sophomore outfielder Bryant Jones did not return to team for the spring semester.

The Tide also added walk-on catcher David Woods, a transfer from Meridian (Miss.) Community College, to its 2008 roster.

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