They say you never forget your first … practice?
At least Steve Spurrier hasn’t.
Surveying the Bluff Road practice fields Tuesday night, Spurrier spotted freshman WR and Tampa native Ace Sanders zipping through the defense and was reminded of O.J. Murdock, the highly-regarded Tampa WR in Spurrier’s first season at South Carolina.
Murdock never did much at USC and was gone after two years. He has taken a circuitous route to Division II Fort Hays State, where he plays football and runs track.
Never miss a local story.
Spurrier is hopeful Sanders will be the next Kenny McKinley, and not the next Murdock. The 5-7, 166-pounder got off to a good start Tuesday, getting in and out of his routes quickly and turning heads in the skeleton and team drills.
Marcus Lattimore, whom Rivals ranked as the nation’s top tailback prospect, drew the loudest cheer of the night (a crowd of close to 1,000 turned out) when he caught a pass from Stephen Garcia along the sideline and went in for a score in the team portion of practice.
It’s tough to draw too many conclusions from one practice in shorts and helmets. Garcia had a pretty good night, but fluttered a deep pass toward D.L. Moore that Chris Culliver tipped and Antonio Allen picked off.
Defensive tackle Byron Jerideau, a junior college transfer, looked every bit as big as his listed height (6-0) and weight (339 pounds). That’s not necessarily a good thing.
The Gamecocks had a couple of JUCOs who showed up out of shape last summer, and neither has yet to make an impact. One of them – offensive lineman Rokevious Watkins – sat out Tuesday’s first practice with a stomach virus.
Guys like Watkins and No. 2 Ryan Broadhead need to have good camps or risk falling behind the freshman linemen – Ronald Patrick, A.J. Cann and Tramell Williams – who Spurrier keeps raving about.
Read more: http://blogs.thestateonline.net/jperson/2010/08/03/first-practice-observations/#ixzz0vbbtywJy