Football Camp Notebook for Saturday

August 9, 2003 · MT Media Relations


(Practice No. 8)


MCCOLLUM ON TODAY'S PRACTICE/SCRIMMAGE: "We were very physical on both sides of the ball today, which is something I am pleased to see. However, we still had a few drops by the receivers and we laid the ball on the turf twice during our goal line scrimmage. We have to get better and take care of the football. It's too hard trying to overcome turnovers in this game."


GOAL LINE: The Blue Raiders conducted a 16-play goal line scrimmage at the end of today's practice and the defense clearly rose to the occasion. The defense held the offense out of the end zone for 10 consecutive plays before quarterback Clint Marks optioned one in during the third series. FS Will Martin and LB Alvin Fite made numerous plays as the defensive front got excellent penetration. "The defense stepped up today and got after it," defensive line coach Carey Bailey said. "We need that type effort and execution every day."


AIR FITE: The biggest and most talked about play of the day came during the goal line scrimmage's third series. With the offense at the one-yard line, linebacker Alvin Fite (Nashville) leaped in the air and met running back Kelvin German behind the line of scrimmage to keep the offense from scoring. The hit brought out oohs and aahs from the on-looking fans, while the entire defense erupted in celebration. "The guys up front just got low and cleared the way for me," Fite said. "I just took off and hoped I would be meeting the tailback. It was a lot of fun, but I could not have done it without the play of the defensive line." Former fullback and current strength and conditioning assistant Jason Spray called it a "Lavar Arrington type play".


MAC ON FITE: "Alvin is stepping up to be one of our best linebackers," McCollum said. "He is a leader, has gotten bigger and stronger, and just keeps pushing his way onto the field. His play today was not the first time he has opened some eyes around here. He has been doing this all camp."


INSIDE DRILL: The defense enjoyed another solid day during the teams inside drill. There was virtually little daylight for the Blue Raider running backs as the defensive line did a good job of clogging up the middle. Linebacker Alvin Fite collected two tackles for loss of yards.


OTHER TIDBITS: Former Blue Raider Samuel Smith, a defensive end on last year's team, dropped by practice just prior to walking through graduation on Saturday ... Former linebacker Glenn Jones was also on hand ... For the second straight day, the wide receivers stayed after practice to catch 100 balls each ... About 50 fans took in today's practice ... Glen Elarbee, Middle Tennessee's all-conference center the past two years, is now a graduate assistant in the Blue Raider weight room ... Jake Cox, a native of Greenwood, AR, is the Blue Raiders' new defensive graduate assistant. Cox comes to the 'Boro by way of Central Arkansas.


ANNUAL MEDIA KICKOFF LUNCHEON: Middle Tennessee will hold its annual kickoff luncheon on Wednesday, August 13 at 11 AM. The event will take place in the Floyd Stadium Press Box (level 4). Guest speakers will be President Sidney McPhee, Athletic Director Boots Donnelly, and Head Football Coach Andy McCollum. Basketball coaches Kermit Davis and Stephany Smith will also be on hand.


FAN DAY: Middle Tennessee's annual fan day is set for August 16 at Noon in Floyd Stadium. Fans will be able to gain autographs from all the players and coaches, while also having the opportunity to take a picture with their favorite Blue Raider. There will be free cokes and hot dogs, a rock climbing wall, a football toss game, and 102.9 The Buzz will be doing a live remote from the event. Fan day is free and open to the public.




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