USC Preseason Football Practice Report

Thursday was a happy day in the Lou Holtz household. Beth Holtz, wife of South Carolina head football coach Lou Holtz, received an encouraging report from the medical staff at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Fla. Mrs. Holtz, who battled throat cancer prior to her husband taking the USC job in December of 1998, got some good news from the doctors Thursday morning. Coach Holtz was with her, having flown down from Columbia earlier in the morning ...

"The C-scans she had done on Wednesday showed a reduction of fluid in her lungs and the doctors said that was a good sign," said Coach Holtz following the Gamecocks' afternoon workout in Columbia. "The doctors said her condition had reversed. We are absolutely ecstatic. We appreciate all the support, prayers, notes and cards we have received from everyone. This was a happy day for the Holtz family."

* Coach Holtz said that Mrs. Holtz had started feeling better the last month or so, after having struggled some this summer. "The previous reports we had received had us concerned," said Coach Holtz. "One of the nodules on her lung had decreased in size. My wife attributes her good news to faith in God, proper medicine and exercise. She looks great and feels much better."

* Coach Holtz then turned his attention towards the 2003 edition of the Gamecock football team. "I wish our fans would direct their prayers and thoughts to our football team with an equal amount of devotion," quipped Holtz. "That may take an even greater miracle."

* Coach Holtz noted that the two freshmen tailbacks - Demetris Summers and Cory Boyd -- were really starting to showcase their talents. "I've been impressed with both of them," said Holtz. "Our running backs are playing much better without the football. I must compliment Coach (Jimmy) Satterfield and his staff at Lexington High School for the job they did with Demetris Summers."

* Coach Holtz said that another freshman, Syvelle Newton, was also making a bid for playing time. "Syvelle came to me after practice Wednesday and asked if he could be moved to receiver," said Coach Holtz. "He's going to be a quarterback, but he didn't want to redshirt this year. So, we'll take a look at him at receiver. He is a talent. He still will throw with the quarterbacks after practice, because unless he is going to be a first round draft pick at receiver, which he very well could be, I still think he can be an outstanding quarterback."

* Injury update: Tight end Andy Boyd (knee) is likely to have surgery later this month and could miss the entire season; OL Chris White is still out with a neck strain; DT Brandon Schweitzer is improving, but is still out with a knee sprain; DT Randy Jackson had problems with the heat Thursday afternoon; WR Taqiy Muhammad had an asthma attack towards the end of practice and was treated in the training room; DB Andrea Gause was held from practice with a migraine headache. Head athletics trainer Rod Walters said Thursday afternoon's practice was the hottest thus far during preseason camp.

* Coach Holtz said that the four junior college newcomers - OL Woodly Telfort, DT Freddy Saint-Preux; DE Charles Silas; and LB De'Adrian Coley were all having a good camp and should be contributors this fall. Coach Holtz said that Coley reminded him of Shannon Wadley, who started for the Gamecocks three seasons ago at linebacker before getting injured.

* Friday's schedule: Defensive coordinator Chris Cosh will be available to the media following the morning workout at approximately 12 noon outside the players entrance of the stadium (not in the press room). Requested players will also be available in that area between 12 noon and 12:45 p.m. Both practices are closed on Friday.

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