QBs Have Tune-up For First Scrimmage

A report from the second practice of the day on Tuesday features comments from Blake Field, Calvin Booker, Tommy Tuberville, an injury update and more.

Auburn, Ala.--The second practice of the day on Tuesday was mostly a tune-up for Auburn's first scrimmage of the preseason, which is scheduled for Wednesday morning.

The scrimmage, which will include SEC officials and 80-90 plays, will be an opportunity for the co-backup quarterbacks, Calvin Booker and Blake Field, to make a move to win the number two job spot on the depth chart behind starter Brandon Cox.

"It's a big practice for me coming up on Wednesday," Booker tells Inside the Auburn Tigers. "It's time for me to show what I have learned all summer and what I have practiced on in the past week."

Booker, a redshirt freshman from Atlanta, entered spring drills in a dead heat for the No. 2 spot with fellow redshirt freshman Blake Field.

"I am just focusing on execution," Booker says. "I want to make sure that I know everything that is going on to show both my coaches and my teammates. It is time to put it to the test."

Calvin Booker throws a pass at the Tuesday evening practice.

Booker says that Wednesday's scrimmage is the part of football practice he enjoys. "I love to scrimmage," he says. "I wish we could scrimmage every day. It is time to show how much I have progressed."

Field, who came to Auburn from North Florida Christian in Tallahassee, spent the 2004 season redshirting along with Booker. Field says he knows that Wednesday's scrimmage is an important one for him, too.

"I am very excited about it and it actually gives me a chance to show what I have learned so far or re-learned," Field says. "I feel like I have gotten a lot better, but I still struggle a little bit--but everybody does that. I feel like I have learned the inner detail of the offense and everything."

Field says he has spent extra time with the coaching staff going over his assignments to make sure he knows what to do in every situation.

"The fun time when you are quarterback is when you are successful and loved by everybody," Field says with a smile. "The fun time is also just being with your teammates and being successful running a play and doing it perfect every time."

Blake Field prepares to throw a pass in Tuesday's second practice.

Tommy Tuberville says Wednesday's practice will be important for the quarterbacks, but it won't be a make or break session. "Field and Booker, we will separate them probably after Saturday's scrimmage, but it is a big day for those two guys," Tuberville notes.

The head coach called an audible on Tuesday evening, moving the practice from the intramural fields to the artificial turf field at the football complex that he calls the "rubber field." Heavy rains in the area the past 24 hours left the intramural fields soaked. If they aren't dry by Wednesday morning, the scrimmage will be moved to the "rubber field," Tuberville says.

After taking a day off from practice on Monday, the Tigers had a physical, full pads session on Tuesday morning. In the second practice of the day, the Tigers worked out in shorts. The session featured work on the kicking game, individual drills and pass-skel.

"The first day of two-a-days went well," Tuberville says. "We had a change of plan and came to the rubber field because of the wet grounds. We need to scrimmage tomorrow (Wednesday) and we will scrimmage unless it rains more."

The Tigers are scheduled to hit the field around 9:45 a.m. and start the scrimmage about a half hour later with the one offense vs. the one defense and the twos vs. the twos and the rest vs. the rest. Their scrimmage on Saturday will be closed to the public.

"Tomorrow will be a big test for some guys to see where they are and to see if they are going to get as much work in the next few weeks as they would if they were playing," Tuberville says.

In other news from Tuesday's second practice:

*Wide receiver Jamoga Ramsey will have to have knee surgery on Wednesday after going down with an injury while trying to make a touchdown catch in the morning practice. Tuberville says it is too early to know how much damage was done to the knee.

*Brandon Cox, who has been busy passing the ball all week, only threw some short touch passes in the second practice to keep his arm from getting weary, Tuberville says.

*Two of AU's top defensive ends, Stanley McClover and Marquies Gunn, remained sidelined with hamstring problems.

*AU standout junior receiver Courtney Taylor missed the Tuesday evening practice with a groin pull.

*Sophomore cornerback Jonathan Wilhite practiced in the morning, but missed the evening session with a sinus problem.

*AU coaches are hoping that center Steven Ross will be able to scrimmage on Saturday as he recovers from a hip flexor. Joe Cope will start at center on Wednesday. Offensive line coach Hugh Nall says that the walk-on has been practicing very well in recent days. The Tigers have also used Leon Hart and Jonathan Palmer at center this preseason.


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