No excuses, just hard work

A player that has over come an injury that cost him a chance of a scholarship during his senior year of high school has worked his way to compete for playing time on the Oregon Ducks roster. Redshirt freshman Terrell Ward, 5-10, 189 is a cornerback from famed De La Salle High School in Concord, California is quick to point out that little nagging injuries are no excuse for performance.

Ward walked onto the Ducks roster last year and has steadily impressed the coaches and onlookers that attend the Ducks practice with his hard play. He, along with his teammates will conclude the 2006 spring workouts on Saturday when the Ducks conduct the annual spring football game in Autzen Stadium starting at 2 p.m.

After suffering a debilitating knee-injury that ended his high school career after only three games in the 2003 season. While four of his teammates from De La Salle, Cameron Colvin, Jackie Bates, Willie Glasper and the late Terrance Kelly all committed to Oregon as scholarship players Ward was left without an opportunity to earn a scholarship because of the injury.

"When I came out of high school I didn't have any scholarship offers because in my senior year I broke my knee in the third game of the season," explained Ward of his high school career. "That year was the year I was going to earn my scholarship and that didn't work out so I had to find other means."

Things brightened up for Ward when he invited to walk on in the fall of 2005. He chose to come to Oregon because obviously he had friends from his old team on the Ducks roster but he also liked what the University of Oregon had to offer.

"Three of my best friends came up here so that is one of the reasons," said Ward of why he chose Oregon to go to school. "It is a great campus, great school, and great environment."

Last fall Ward caught the eye of many by his hard play and aggressiveness in practice. So far this spring he has displayed the same qualities and many believe he will see playing time next fall as the Ducks embark on the challenge of challenging for a Pac-10 championship and at least repeating a successful 10-2 mark that was achieved in 2005.

This Saturday, Ward will be one of the six or so healthy defensive backs to play in the annual spring contest. Ward and his two former high school teammates, Bates and Glasper should see considerable playing time in the spring game. Ward has been tenacious in his coverage skills and has benefited by playing against all the tall, fast receivers on the Oregon roster. What has been his evaluation of how the spring has gone so far?

"It's going good," Ward said cheerfully. "I had a little nagging injury over the last couple of weeks but I'm not making any excuses, it is going good over all."

Oregon's head coach Mike Bellotti indicated that the team would be broken up into two separate squads this year for the annual spring scrimmage that will be televised live statewide by Comcast 14 and will replayed at 7:30 p.m. Sunday. In addition, the Comcast 14 telecast will be available live on the internet on the athletic department's official website,, through its subscription service O-Zone. The Spring Game also will broadcast on the radio live by KUGN (590 AM) in Eugene, KXL (750 AM) in Portland and KZZR (1230 AM) in Burns.

For the third year in a row Oregon's athletic department is requesting a donation of three non-perishable food items as admission from everyone who attends Saturday's Spring Game, with all proceeds to be used to restock the Lane County food bank.

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