News from the Tennessee Valley Sports



TUSCALOOSA —Alabama practiced in full pads for the first time in the 2007 spring football season as they conducted a two-hour workout Wednesday at the Thomas-Drew Practice Facility.

“Everything is fast tempo,” said wide receiver DJ Hall. “We are further along at this time and the guys have a different mindset of what we want to do. We are going to do whatever it takes.”

One of the reasons the team has been able to practice at a fast pace and accomplish a lot has been the off-season conditioning program — called the four quarter program — which junior center Antoine Caldwell attributes to the improvement of the team.

“The four-quarter program we just got done doing was amazing for both on-the-field stuff and off-the-field stuff,” Caldwell said. “It taught us a lot about what was going on with the football team and what we need to do to become a better football team. It unified the whole team and made us a stronger football team. I have been doing a lot on my own before we started spring ball so everything is coming pretty easy for me.”

The Tide will resume practice on Friday with the fourth of 15 scheduled workouts for the team.


LEXINGTON, Ky. — Heavy storms pushed Kentucky’s first football practice of the spring indoors Wednesday morning, but coach Rich Brooks and some of his stars say the on-the-field forecast is far brighter than a year ago.

“I feel like we’re clicking,” said receiver Keenan Burton, who passed up a chance at the NFL to return to Kentucky.

The Wildcats feature a group of offensive playmakers largely intact from the team that won the Music City Bowl, the school’s first postseason victory since 1984.

This team is faster than that one on both sides of the ball, Brooks said, but it’s also a little older.

“I don’t think there’s any question we have more speed and athletic ability on the field than we had a year ago,” said Brooks, whose contract was extended after what was by far the best season in his Kentucky tenure. “The good news is, a lot of it is even more experienced.”

When asked about position battles, Brooks talked about linemen and long-snappers — a far cry from last spring (and even last fall) when the race for starting quarterback was too close to call.

- Staff, Wire Reports

Copyright 2005 THE DECATUR DAILY. All rights reserved.
AP contributed to this report.

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