Commodores Improve During Afternoon Practice After Disappointing Tuesday Morning Session 8/21/02

Tuesday with the Commodores in Nashville - When the Commodores hit the field Tuesday afternoon, Head Coach Bobby Johnson was looking for a more enthusiastic group of players than the team he directed nine hours earlier. By the end of the day, he had his wish.

The squad worked on offensive calls, defensive reads, fundamentals and special team areas for the first 90 minutes of the afternoon session, then pushed the intensity up several levels with a spirited goal-line scrimmage that closed the practice.

When the session ended, Johnson felt a little better about the entire days activities.

I was pleased with the way the guys came back from the morning practice. We were way too sluggish in the early prctice. I also thought the live goal-line period we did toward the was one of the best work this team has achieved so far. We were getting some guys making plays on defense and some backs running hard with the football. We also were getting some good push from the guys up front, Johnson said.

The Commodores returned to practice Wednesday at 6:00 a.m., and 3:30 p.m.

During the situational scrimmage, the offense started five red-zone possessions at the four-yard line. Though they scored three touchdowns, the defense kept their counterparts out of the end zone on the final two possessions. Junior RB Jason Bourque and QB hopefuls Jay Cutler and Benji Walker scored on runs, but the defense led by LB Moses Osemwegie, DE Jovan Haye, DT Matt Clay and safety Jonathan Shaub made several big plays in the closing possessions.

The Commodores return to practice Wednesday at 6:00 a.m., and 3:30 p.m.

Severe Thunderstorms End Morning Practice
The Commodores left the practice field 30 minutes early Tuesday morning due to a fast-moving thunderstorm. It marked the first time adverse weather has forced the team off the newly installed AstroPlay surface at John Rich Football Complex.

DE Freeman Undergoes Surgery
Richard Freeman, a freshman defensive end prospect from nearby Brentwood High School, will miss the season after undergoing shoulder surgery Tuesday afternoon. He will redshirt this year and could return for spring practice.

Freeman, son of former Vanderbilt Commodore basketball standout Rod Freeman, underwent the arthroscopic procedure at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Dr. Eric McCarty, the teams chief orthopedic surgeon and a specialist with Vanderbilt Sports Medicine, performed the surgery.

Holt Leaves Team
Jerrin Holt, a reserve wide receiver from Grand Prairie, Texas, left the football squad Tuesday, Coach Johnson announced. Holt redshirted last year, and was competing for a reserve wide receiver role during the preseason. He was not listed among the teams first two offensive units in the preseason depth chart.


Vanderbilt Athletic Department
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