Rod Report - Day V

West Virginia's deep linebacking corps has taken a preseason hit.

Marc Magro, battling to start at the mike (middle) slot, has mononucleosis. The senior is the second player within the last two months to contract the disease. Fullback Max Anderson is just recovering from the disease. Since symptoms usually do not appear until one to two months after infection, it is hard to determine how many players could eventually be affected, though the infectiousness of mono is far less that what most imagine.

Magro, a 6-3, 240-pounder, will likely miss at least the next few days of camp. The Morgantown, W.Va. native will also likely lose some weight and have to work himself back into shape prior to seeing any full-contact action. The infection comes after Magro missed spring drills after knee surgery. He played much of last season with a torn ACL.

Head coach Rich Rodriguez also announced that receiver Wes Lyons, recovering from a knee scope, and quarterback/wideout Adam Bednarik, who sprained his back while weightlifting, were limited for the third consecutive day.

"It's just bad luck for both of them, but with Lyons, each day he misses, people move ahead of him," Rodriguez said. "It takes time to come back from a scope. When he does, I think he will compete. If he does, he will be in the mix. If not, he won't."

WVU was in full pads for the first time Wednesday, but was interrupted by rain for the second consecutive day. The team moved from the surface of Mountaineer Field to the Caperton Indoor Practice Facility and was limited for special teams work and otherwise due to having all players within the 70 yards of area available. The lights also went out in the IPF for 20 minutes, though WVU continued to drill. It will not be able to review that portion of the film due to darkness.

"You start practice, there is a lightening storm; then you go inside and the lights go out," Rodriguez said. "We got half a practice, in the dark, indoors, in the middle of August. Bad luck. … It was terrible. It was terrible at the start, so we started them over. It got a little better. The only time we moved the ball was when the lights were out because the defense could not see who had it. It was like Cincinnati two years ago."

Rodriguez also mentioned the difficulty in scheduling practices around school. West Virginia changed its summer school format this season, allowing professors to set the beginning and ending dates for classes. There also were not two distinct sessions (I and II), but instead one longer one that, again, could be broken down in whatever manner professors chose. That has caused some classes to run longer, and some WVU players are still taking courses. That means half of the team, at times, is absent for portions of practice.

"It's OK for weather," Rodriguez, who said he could not recall a fall camp when so much rain and poor weather plagued his team. "You can check the radar and move it around the approaching storms. But to have that and then class on top of it, it's hard. You try to move it, and you can't accommodate everybody. Our players are going to get an education. They are not going to miss class. But I might have to talk to Mike (Garrison, WVU's new President) about it. Or the NCAA should give you a day or two on either side of it to (manage) practices. We have half the team in class in the middle of two-a-days? It's ridiculous. Not guys going to class, but the way it's done."

"And it's a nice facility. But it's not big enough. You get the whole team in there, there is not enough room. We were going to go in the morning (Thursday), but you have to rush it because of class. I don't want to rush it, so we'll go at night, and outside, if we can."

West Virginia will practice twice Thursday, once in the afternoon and once later at night to avoid the classes. In previous years, it practiced in the morning, then the afternoon. Rodriguez said the next few days (WVU has two-a-days Thursday and a scrimmage Saturday) will begin to allow for better evaluation of freshmen. He said that it typically takes until the end of fall camp to know if a first-year player can help during the upcoming season. Rodriguez said Jock Sanders, Noel Devine and Brandon Hogan "ran around well. But you have to do it everyday."

Rodriguez also commented on the receivers: "They were all right. It's been nothing impressive. The veterans haven't done anything. The rookies are a bit more impressive. We ain't got four wideouts right now, and we'd like to run four-wide sets. So that's an interesting problem to have."

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