*Defensive tackle Andrew McCain went down early in practice with an injury during a tackling drill. Coach Tommy Tuberville said the injury is not serious and that it is a bruised shoulder.
*Defensive lineman Tez Doolittle participated in the contact work even though he is not full speed yet with his kneecap injury.
*Freshman tailback Ben Tate made some very impressive moves on inside running plays. He seems to be able to accelerate off cuts.
*On the subject of Tate, offensive coordinator Al Borges mentioned after practice the tailback is better than expected.
*Linebacker Merrill Johnson had several big hits today.
*Tuberville had praise for wide receiver Anthony Campbell, who is making the move over from cornerback.
*Tuberville also said he saw some good things from redshirt freshman Montez Billings, who made several nice catches.
*Quarterback Brandon Cox said he is impressed with the speed and the intensity of the defense. He noted that the linebackers are very, very quick and that Will Muschamp has the group playing with a lot of energy.
*One of the practice notes from earlier in the week was an observation that Brandon Cox is throwing the football with more zip. I asked Brandon if he believes that is the case and he said he is throwing it harder, something he has worked on during the offseason. He said he really focused on arm strength in the weight room.
Sophomore defensive lineman Pat Sims chases a student manager in a rush the quarterback drill on Thursday evening.
*Senior wide receiver Courtney Taylor is looking very good at practice. He says his ankle is still sore from last fall's injury, but it isn't preventing him from doing anything. He notes that he is trying to be a leader on the field, which is a high priority.
The senior says he plans to go hard on every play in every practice and he doesn't want anybody seeing him "slack off at any time." Taylor has also learned the assignments for all of the wide receiver positions so he will always be able to tell one of the young receivers where to line up on a particular play. For example, in the 11 on 11 work, Anthony Campbell and Ulysses Alexander both got confused on where they were supposed to be on a play.
*Jason Bosley got some work with the second team at center on Thursday.
*In the one on one drills, freshman Oscar Gonzalez had some success at offensive tackle.
*Senior guard Ben Grubbs made some nice blocks in the one on one.
*The Auburn football coaching staff served as host for a fish fry tonight for the high school coaches in town for AU's annual coaching clinic.
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