Spring practice ends, so do a few careers

Spring practice wrapped up Thursday night under the lights. Although the players were in shorts and shoulder pads, they worked hard. The coaches did not send off the team for the summer with an easy practice. The Cats had a lot thrown at them and went at it. There were also several announcements made about injured players.

The Cats did a lot of line work in the practice, focusing specific situations.

Coaches handed out achievement awards for spring practice. Chris Johnson was named most improved offensive player and Lamon Means received the award for the defense. Walk-on Charles McRae was named offensive newcomer and redshirt defensive lineman Paul Phillipp received the award on the other side of the ball.

It was made official earlier in the day, Fata Avegalio's career is over. Avegalio suffered from a number of headaches and dizzy spells dating back to last season. He will receive a medical scholarship and has been invited to be a student assistant.

"He is out there and coaching everyday," John Mackovic said. "He is welcome to be a student assistant with us, and I hope he wants to do it next year."

The news was bad for John Rattay as well. Rattay has reinjured his knee and will likely require additional surgery.

"He was cleared last week to play, and he played a lot on Thursday and Friday in the scrimmage," Mackovic said. "He re-injured his knee, and he likely will need surgery again. But, if there is any way he can get back, he will because John is that kind of guy."

Rattay tore his ACL last season at Pasadena Community College and has worked to get back. It is not known just how bad the injury really is.

Safety Justin Jochum is going to leave the team as well. Jochum has battled injuries his whole career and has decided to focus on his academics. The engineering student has earned an academic scholarship, which will pay for school.

Bobby Gill was named the starting kicker. Either Nick Folk or Ryan Slack will handle the kicking duties. As of now Danny Baugher and James Molina will handle the punting duties.

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