Freshman Lineman Ready For Some Football

Rudy Odom will be trying to impress the coaching staff as the Auburn Tigers open preseason football practice.

Auburn, Ala.--Defensive line coach Don Dunn says he is looking for help at the tackle spot where Jay Ratliff played so well last year.

Dunn, a veteran assistant for Coach Tommy Tuberville's Tigers, says he will even play a true freshman if the newcomer proves he is ready for the assignment.

Rudy Odom will take the practice field with his fellow freshmen for the first official preseason practice on Tuesday afternoon.

In a class that features several promising young defensive linemen, the largest in the group, Rudy Odom, says he is eager to hit the field for his first college practice, which is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday at the football complex.

"I am excited about it," Odom says. "I can't wait."

Like many of the 2005 signees, he took advantage of the opportunity to enroll for summer classes and become more familiar with AU before fall semester classes begin in August.

"I got here about two months ago," Odom notes. "It was definitely worthwhile to come up early and get in better shape, learn my way around Auburn and get to know the guys."

"I took three classes and I am doing well in them right now," Odom adds. "I just took exams yesterday and today and I think I did well with those, too."

Although Dunn has said there is playing time for even a true freshman at the three technique (tackle) position where the 6-5, 280-pounder will line up, the former Fountainbleau High star from Mandeville, La., says he is more concerned about the short term on his goals.

"My goals are just to work hard and try to get better," he says. "I really don't know what it is going to be like right now, but I know that I plan to go out there and work hard."

Odom, who recent turned 18 years old, says that he will probably lose some weight in the heat of preseason practice, but hopes to be at 285 pounds when the season starts vs. Georgia Tech on Sept. 3rd.

Odom, Brian West from Ozen High in Beaumont, Tex., and Sen'Derrick Marks from Vigor are in the new interior defensive linemen in the 2005 signee class. Antonio Coleman from Williamson High in Mobile and Alonzo Horton of Abramson High in New Orleans are expected to line up at defensive end for the Tigers.

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