KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee wide receiver Da’Rick Rogers, a first-team All-SEC receiver last year, was suspended indefinitely Thursday for a violation of team rules.
Tennessee coach Derek Dooley said he doesn’t expect Rogers to rejoin the team this season, though he didn’t completely rule out the possibility.
“When you get into the coaching profession, you quickly learn that probably the No. 1 professional hazard is the behavior of 18- to 22-year-olds,” Dooley said. “I can assure you guys this, that there’s not one player, there’s not really one member in the whole organization that we’re not prepared to go play without.”
Rogers had 67 catches for 1,040 yards and nine touchdowns last season.
GEORGIA: The Bulldogs have a likely starter at tailback for its season opener in Ken Malcome and not much separation between its top fullbacks either.
Running backs coach Bryan McClendon said Thursday that former walk-on Merritt Hall and senior Richard Samuel are “1A and 1B” at fullback. Hall will start the opener.
• When former Burke County standout Cornelius Washington is working at outside linebacker, Garrison Smith is getting first crack at the starting defensive end spot, defensive coordinator Todd Grantham said.
SOUTH CAROLINA: Quarterback Connor Shaw missed most of practice Thursday because of back spasms, a week before the ninth-ranked Gamecocks open the season at Vanderbilt.
Gamecocks coach Steve Spurrier said on his radio call-in show that Shaw was struggling to move at practice, so the coaches sent him to the training room for treatment. South Carolina returns to the practice field Saturday. Spurrier said he hoped the day off would help Shaw’s condition.
AUBURN: Sophomore Kiehl Frazier will start at quarterback in the Tigers’ opener against Clemson.Coach Gene Chizik said in a statement that Frazier won the battle with Clint Moseley that started in the spring.
ARKANSAS: Coach John L. Smith says running back Knile Davis will take part in his first full-contact scrimmage today. Davis missed all of last season with an ankle injury.
MISSISSIPPI STATE: The school says it is working with the NCAA because of a “potential recruiting irregularity” in the football program. The school says the examination has lasted several months and that it is close to finished. NCAA spokesperson Stacey Osburn confirmed the NCAA and Mississippi State were “working cooperatively.”
MATHIEU UPDATE: Tyrann Mathieu, a Heisman Trophy finalist last season, who was kicked off Louisiana State University’s team this month, will not play this season, his adoptive father told ESPN.com on Thursday.