Originally created 08/08/06

Bulldogs tackle shifts over to offensive line



ATHENS, Ga. - The Georgia Bulldogs moved senior Dale Dixson from defense to offense to shore up their depth at center and guard.

Dixson, a 6-foot-2, 305-pounder, made the switch at Monday's practice. At one point, he practiced snaps with head coach Mark Richt, a former quarterback.

"Dale has a big enough body and he's unselfish enough to help us by trying to get ready to play," Richt said. "We don't have a lot of veteran players on the offensive line, so he will strengthen us there."

Backup center Ian Smith will miss the first two games while serving a suspension for violating team rules. Starting center Nick Jones is flanked by two new starters at guard, Fernando Velasco and Chester Adams.

SOUTH CAROLINA: Coach Steve Spurrier got some good news on the team's running attack even before hitting the field for practice - Cory Boyd did not have a fracture in his hand and will not miss serious workouts.

Boyd pounced on a loose ball at practice Sunday night and "cracked" his wrist, Spurrier said.

But tests and X-rays Monday did not show a more serious fracture, said Gamecocks athletic spokesman Steve Fink.

Mike Davis, last year's leading rusher with 666 yards and five touchdowns, has not practiced yet this season because of a foot infection.

ARKANSAS: Coach Houston Nutt said he hopes to know by the middle of next week who will lead his team at quarterback into its Sept. 2 opener against Southern California.

Meeting with reporters at the team's media day, Nutt said Casey Dick, Robert Johnson and Mitch Mustain each must prove that they can lead Arkansas through a schedule that includes five teams that played in bowls last year.

"Who's the most consistent? Who's going to take care of the ball? Who's going to lead our team each day, day in and day out? That's what you're looking for," Nutt said. He said he hopes to know who his starter will be within 1 weeks.

Johnson started seven games for Arkansas last season, and Dick started four. Mustain is a freshman whom many dubbed as the top high school player in the nation last season.

MIAMI: By the time coach Larry Coker walked onto the practice fields, sweat was already rolling down the face of offensive lineman Derrick Morse.

"It's a beautiful morning," Morse sang as he trotted from one warmup drill to the next.

Not surprisingly, on the first day of training camp, the Hurricanes were in a joyful mood.

Coming off a 9-3 season that left the Hurricanes disappointed and bitter, they opened camp with admittedly much to accomplish before the Sept. 4 season-opener against archrival Florida State.

But after the first two-hour workout, Coker seemed relatively pleased.

"As I told them, it's the first day of a journey," said Coker, who is 53-9 with the Hurricanes. "It's a good start. We had some good things happen today, and I think the thing you like and you would hope to have the first day is a lot of energy. Certainly, we had that today."