08/21 USC Preseason Football Practice Report

<b>Columbia, S.C.</b> - Thursday marked the first day of classes on the USC campus. The Gamecock football squad had a physical 2.5-hour practice in the afternoon in preparation for their final preseason scrimmage on Friday. The scrimmage is closed ...

* Friday's scrimmage will be like a dress rehearsal. The team will go through everything they need to before and during the game, including pre-game warm-ups, bench decorum, on-sides kick, two-point plays, etc.

* Junior college defensive end Charles Silas did not practice for the third day in a row. However, Coach Lou Holtz said that his transcript did arrive to the USC Admissions Office on Thursday and once it is verified and he is admitted, he will be able to resume practice.

* Following the afternoon workout, head coach Lou Holtz met with the media. Here are some of his comments:

"We had a much better practice defensively. Friday will be a very important scrimmage for us. We will cover everything we do before, during and after a game. Many of these players have never been in a college game. Josh Johnson (freshman) did some good things today. We moved him from end to linebacker. I don't know how much he can help us this year, but believe me, he will play a lot for us before he leaves Carolina. There are still several positions up for grabs. Nose guard, one cornerback, one linebacker and left offensive guard are still up in the air."

* Position Updates: The competition Coach Holtz was referring to at those positions include: Eric Stroman, Freddy Saint-Preux, Preston Thorne and Brandon Schweitzer and nose guard; Deandre' Eiland, Fred Bennett and Teddy Crawford at cornerback; Kevin Caldwell, Darel Slay and De'Adrian Coley at linebacker; and Jabari Levey and Jeff Barnes at left guard.

* Injury update: LB Darel Slay twisted his knee during Thursday's practice; NG Eric Stroman has a sore foot; OL Chad Walker missed due to heat exhaustion. OL Chris White did not practice Thursday as he traveled to Chester to visit his family to discuss whether or not he will continue playing football. White, who missed last season with a neck condition, had a neck strain early in camp but had returned to practice. Coach Holtz said White and his family will make the decision and he will support whatever that might be.

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