Monday Practice Report: Walk-ons Rewarded

The Gamecocks went through a relatively light workout Monday night in preparation for their third and final scrimmage on Tuesday. The big news of the day involved five walk-ons, all of whom were awarded with scholarships.

The lucky five were Thomas Coleman, Scott Morgan, Greg Wright, Brett Nichols, and Seth Edwards. Spurrier spoke with the media after practice, and discussed the awarding of the scholarships.

"We thought those guys were very deserving and they are good guys who are all set to graduate. We have a criteria [for putting walk-ons on scholarship]: Most Deserving." Spurrier commended the players for their continued commitment to the football team, and talked about why he encourages young players to walk-on. "I've had a lot of good walk-ons. I've been fortunate down at Florida. I didn't have many at Duke; it costs too much at Duke." The chance to earn a scholarship is the motivation for young players. "When you've got [scholarships] available you put [walk-ons] on. That encourages walk-ons." The ball coach added a message for high school players, saying, "If a kid thinks he can play and gets overlooked, come on to South Carolina, and we'll give him a chance."

Spurrier talked about the role academics play with players. "Most walk-ons are good students. They go to class because they're paying out of their own money. They don't pay their money and screw around like some football players do." The Ball Coach said he hoped that attitude would rub off on some of the scholarship players. "We try to teach our guys to feel fortunate and advantage and try to get an education. Some listen. Unfortunately, they all don't. Most of our guys are pretty good now about going to class and so forth."

Turning toward the rest of the team, Spurrier mentioned the quarterback race. Asked who the backup quarterback is, Spurrier was noncommittal, saying, "It would be Cade or Chris Smelley. Those two are battling it out right now. Cade has done some good things recently. Chris, though, has looked the best in the scrimmages, so we'll see how that plays out tomorrow night." Spurrier also said that Tommy Beecher would get a lot of work during the scrimmage.

Terrance Campbell suffered a left knee sprain during Monday's practice, but it is not expected to be serious. Andy Boyd is still out because of a shoulder injury. The good news is that he was seen at practice and his arm was no longer in a sling. However, Coach Spurrier said Boyd almost certainly would miss the season opener against Mississippi State.

The team will go through their final scrimmage of the fall Tuesday night. Coaches will begin installing the game plan for Mississippi State following the scrimmage. The scrimmage will be closed to the public.

Gamecock Anthem Top Stories