COLLEGE STATION, Texas- The Texas A&M football team practiced for more than two hours inside the McFerrin Athletic Center as the Aggies continued preparations for the 2008 season on Tuesday.
“I thought it was a good, crisp practice,” head coach Mike Sherman said. “We had better hitting today. We’re cutting down the reps just a little bit. We’ve had quite a few reps at practice, so the energy level is a little higher, which is a good thing. I thought they did well today.”
Sherman praised the play of a wide array of non-scholarship players who have pushed for a spot on the two-deep depth chart during August camp. By name, Sherman mentioned fullbacks Nick LaMantia, Anthony Vela and Ryan O’Bryant, wide receiver Drew Williamson, placekicker Randy Bullock, running back Colton Haverda and linebacker Derek Dumas.
“We don’t discriminate; it’s equal opportunity here at Texas A&M,” Sherman said. “We give everybody an opportunity to play. Like I told them the first time I talked to them: it doesn’t matter how you got here, if you can help us win, you’re going to play.”
Sherman was asked about the players who are seeing action at two positions, such as redshirt freshman Ryan Tannehill (quarterback/receiver) and sophomore Jerrod Johnson (quarterback/receiver). Even first-game quarterback starter Stephen McGee took snaps at wide receiver on Tuesday.
“It’s a credit to them,” Sherman said. “Let’s face it, (Tannehill and Johnson) came here as quarterbacks. They didn’t make the final cut (for first-game starter), but some of our best athletes are quarterbacks and we’re just trying to win football games. To their credit, they’ve jumped in there and said ‘what can we do to help us win?’ It’s a totally unselfish perspective from the quarterback position. They’ve all said ‘we want to play quarterback’ and I told them I won’t forget that part of it.”
The Aggies return to the practice field on Wednesday for a single workout at 7:30 a.m. The final football scrimmage of preseason camp will take place at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 21 at Kyle Field, weather permitting. Texas A&M current and former students and faculty and staff (with proper identification) may enter Kyle Field through Gate 5, which is located between the Netum Steed weight room and the first deck on the west side of Kyle Field. Visitors are reminded that camera or audio/video recorders are forbidden, and cell phones should be left in the car during the scrimmage.
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