South Carolina Preseason Football Practice Report

Columbia, S.C. - * South Carolina's football team practiced in full pads Wednesday afternoon, marking the final practice before classes start on the USC campus Thursday. The team had its annual talent show following the workout, then concluded the day's activities with a team dinner. Among the highlights of the talent show were freshman offensive lineman Justin Sorensen singing "O Canada," the national anthem of his homeland, while he was draped in a Canadian flag ...

... placekicker Josh Epps playing the guitar and singing a tune from Carolina's own Hootie and the Blowfish; and a rap song rendition from freshmen Chris Hampton and Antonio Heffner of Memphis.

* There were no new injuries to report. Freshman defensive lineman Matt Raysor was held from practice but found out later in the afternoon that he had been officially admitted to USC and will begin classes on Thursday as scheduled. There is still no news on freshman fullback Antonio Lamar.

* Following the practice, USC head coach Lou Holtz met with the media. Here are some of his comments: "I think this was a practice that our seniors will remember. It was kind of like going to the dentist's office and getting a tooth pulled without novocaine. It's kind of interesting to see Na'Shan Goddard and Jabari Levey going up against George Gause and Moe Thompson every day in practice. Those are pretty good matchups ... We moved a couple of players around today. We moved Seth Edwards from defensive end to offensive guard. I think he can help us with depth there. We also moved Jamie Peters from fullback to defensive end. I think that may be his best position. He played there in high school. Dondrial Pinkins is playing very well, as are Syvelle Newton and Blake Mitchell. We started refining our offense today. Our receivers are really playing well. I think you'll see a different Matthew Thomas this year. Coach (Rick) Stockstill has done an outstanding job with them. Noah Whiteside is having a great camp. Catching the ball and really blocking well. The running backs have responded pretty well this week after Sunday's scrimmage. They are playing better without the ball but they need to be more consistent. That's the key to our running game - consistency. I'd like to see Demetris Summers become a complete football player. I'd like to see him take it to another level running, blocking and receiving. He's a better runner now than he's ever been and he can be an excellent receiver."

* Coach Holtz said that he has suspended walk-on placekicker Charlie Carpenter for one week for "team reasons." Coach Holtz said he expected to visit with Carpenter again on Thursday.

* During a blocking drill at the beginning of Wednesday's practice, Coach Holtz put on a demonstration to emphasize how he wanted it done. Coach Holtz took off his glasses and cap, got a running start and leveled the blocking dummy. Afterwards he said: "I'll have to watch the film before I can make any evaluation on my form." * Coach Holtz also noted the improved playing turf at both Williams-Brice Stadium and the practice fields. "The playing field held up pretty well after the scrimmage and this is the best shape our practice field has been in."

* Coach Holtz said that preparation for Vanderbilt, USC's season opener on Sept. 4 in Nashville, would begin in earnest next week.

* When asked if one of the other quarterbacks could pass Dondrial Pinkins in preseason and emerge as the starter, Holtz quipped: "I don't know. Dondrial's car is awfully slow."

* Classes start at USC on Thursday. Practice is closed.

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