Spring football is here
Click the links for position-by-position looks at the Hurricanes entering spring ball, with thoughts on key battles and issues at each spot.
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CORAL GABLES — Hurricanes players weren’t the only ones running as Mark Richt conducted his first spring practice at his alma mater.
During one particularly high-energy pursuit drill, safeties coach Ephraim Banda sprinted alongside players who were taking an interception to the end zone. He and a player shoved each other as they ran, seemingly encouraging each other to go faster.
So no, Richt isn’t letting his players dip their toes into drills. It’s all-in, beginning now.
UM is determined to make this a team one that doesn’t fade in the back half of games and down the stretch of the season. One new wrinkle had defensive players doing up-downs before hard sprints during coverage drills.
Players worked up a sweat on a humid morning at Greentree Practice Fields. The media was able to watch 20 minutes of drills, in which Richt worked with quarterbacks and defensive coordinator Manny Diaz conducted his work on a separate field.
A few notes:
* Left tackle Trevor Darling and reserve offensive lineman Jahair Jones were present. Both were arrested last week and charged with resisting an officer without violence.
* Darling lined up as the first-team left tackle, next to left guard Kc McDermott, center Alex Gall, right guard Danny Isidora and right tackle Tyree St. Louis. Starting center Nick Linder (shoulder) and right tackle Sunny Odogwu (knee) were not at practice. Both had offseason surgery and will be limited this spring.
It was difficult to determine who will line up where elsewhere.
* Linebacker Darrion Owens (knee) did not participate in drills during the media viewing portion. He did conditioning work off to the side.
* Senior wide receiver Stacy Coley, listed at 6-foot-1 and 193 pounds, looks all of that. He, Lawrence Cager and Darrell Langham look like UM’s most physically impressive receivers.
Scenes from Greentree: