UM Completes First Day Of Full Squad Practices

The University of Miami football team completed its first day of practices with the full team, officially starting preparations for the 2002 season and the opener against Florida A&M coming up on August 31. Head Coach Larry Coker and his staff welcomed the varsity back to work and said he was pleased with the first day of work.

"It was a good start and our veterans were pretty smooth today," Coker said. "We certainly aren't where we need to be to play a game, but I thought our players looked good. We've got a long way to go."

The most noteworthy item of the day was the news that junior Jason Geathers has moved from receiver to tailback. Geathers lined up with the second-team offense for much of the day.

The Delray Beach product excelled in the backfield in high school and played some at tailback as a freshman in 2000 before making the move to receiver in 2001. Geathers rushed for 122 yards on 18 carries in 2000 including a season-best 73 yards on seven carries against Rutgers, including a 58-yard run. As a receiver in 2001, Geathers played in 10 games as a reserve and caught nine passes for 112 yards and one touchdown.

"He looked very good at tailback today," Coker said. "He has a lot of experience there, having played there in high school. We're excited about the switch. It helps us out as we're a little thin there, but it also allows us to get a terrific athlete on the field."

Miami will only have one practice on Sunday, that workout slated for 3:30 p.m. Coker also announced that the team's first scrimmage of the fall will take place during the afternoon practice on Wednesday, August 15, beginning at 3:30 p.m. at Greentree.

Practices are open to the public through Friday, August 16. All workouts are closed to the public beginning Saturday, August 17, with regular media policies (viewing for only the first 30 minutes and final 15 minutes of practice) going into effect at that time.

The Hurricanes begin the 2002 season Saturday, August 31, versus Florida A&M at the Orange Bowl. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

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