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March 28, 2003

COUNTDOWN TO KICKOFF: 155 days until the season-opener at Williams-Brice Stadium, Sat., Aug. 30 vs. Louisiana-Lafayette.

GOING CAMPING: USC completed its first week of spring practice with a late afternoon session on Friday. The two-hour practice was conducted under partly cloudy skies, breezy conditions and temperatures in the mid-70’s on the practice fields west of Williams-Brice Stadium. Approximately 325 coaches registered for USC’s coaches clinic and most were on hand for the afternoon session practice. The clinic began Thursday night and concludes Saturday.

QUOTING HEAD COACH LOU HOLTZ: Head coach Lou Holtz spoke with the media following today’s practice.

(on today’s practice) – “There was some good and some bad out there today. I would like to get an idea on a depth chart by Monday. Offensively, Hart Turner (tight end) and Taqiy Muhammad (wide receiver) had a good days work. Dondrial (Pinkins) has a sore elbow. I’m not sure how bad it is right now. They’ve done some tests and haven’t been able to reach a conclusion. We gave up way too many big plays on defense this afternoon. The offense hurt us with the deep pass a couple of times and we can’t have that.

(on spring defensive line standouts) – “Darrell Shropshire is coming on at defensive tackle. The one who is really shocking everyone at defensive tackle is Brandon Schweitzer. We moved him to defensive line before the spring (from fullback), because really the only thing he was going to do was be a blocker. His weight is up and we thought he could help us on defense. He was a good wrestler in high school and they usually wind up being good interior linemen. After watching him two days in shorts, I wasn’t that impressed. But, after he put on the pads, I started liking what I saw”

(on wide receiver Taqiy Muhammad) – “He is very quick and runs well with the ball. I like the burst of speed he gives us at receiver and his personality adds a lot to the offense.”

INJURY NOTES: Injuries of note – DL Eric Stroman (ankle); WR Chavez Donnings (ankle).

UPCOMING SCHEDULE: The Gamecocks will hold practice at 1 p.m. Saturday at the practice fields. USC is scheduled for a Sunday session before having Monday and Tuesday off.

DID YOU KNOW?: South Carolina’s 2003 opener on Aug. 30 ties for the earliest start to a season in school history and is only the fourth game ever played by USC in the month of August (all played in Columbia). The Gamecocks kicked off their 1986 campaign by hosting Miami (Fla.) on Aug. 30. In 1985, USC opened their schedule by hosting The Citadel on Aug. 31, and Carolina began last season with a home contest vs. New Mexico State on Aug. 31.