DEMAREE: Football Cats Workout in the Dog-Days

Posted Jul 23, 2005

With new practice fields under construction on the southeast side of Nutter practice facility - new construction on the west and northwest side – huge concrete trucks lumbering all around – under the huge shadow of the Randolph Morris fiasco – the basketball players felonious allegations – and with the California SFX agency closing in, where oh where are those football cats shedding their dog-days perspiration?

For those that know the logistics of the area, they can’t hide. Tucked down below the baseball field 25 feet below field level in between the track stadium, you can find about fifty Cats. Of course, if you listened close enough between the droning of one of the passing concrete trucks, the wolfing of Wesley Woodyard and Johnny Williams at the receivers would lead you to them!

Keenan Burton, Glenn Holt, Tommy Cook, and young DeMoreo Ford are getting an ear full of the defensive guys. The young Ford shows a lot of quickness but on one play he lines up wide and the usually quiet Shomari Moore quickly jumps in front of Ford close enough for him to smell the onions off his noon hamburger and proclaims, “Aw, I’ve got this guy.” Meanwhile in the background, senior Antoine Huffman directs traffic pointing out where every defensive back should go.

Given the attitude coming out of spring practice and the business-like manner of summer strength and conditioning drills, these players are feeling full of themselves.

Last summers affable Micah Jones strolls by this writer with a determined stone-faced expression. It’s obvious that what changed the upbeat demeanor was last seasons dose of reality. This is the SEC, not Mayfield, Kentucky. It’s conjecture but we would venture to guess that’s why o-lineman Kane Hanniford is no longer around.

It’s very visible that a lot of re-shaping of bodies is occurring at Nutter. Wide receiver Scott Mitchell has trimmed down from 225-pounds to svelte 215-pounds and has his sights set on being the next Michael Irvin.

Defensive coordinator Mike Archer issued a directive to linebacker Mikhail Mabry to trim his 240-pound frame down and Mabry had responded. He is now down to 222-pounds but retains his guns (biceps and triceps).

Myron Prior who was super strong when he signed his Letter of Intent having won a state power-lifting championship competition. But in one of the meets, he tore a pectoral muscle that had to be surgically repaired and he subsequently ballooned up to 340-pounds. Defensive line coach Rick Petrie said Prior is down to 300-pounds and is getting in better and better shape everyday.

Also strolling by on the way back to the showers is two freshman, defensive end Ventrell Jenkins and linebacker Braxton Kelly that look the part and one more, offensive lineman James Alexander that is looking more like the part. All reports say that Jenkins has the strength to match the look. Alexander an obvious redshirt was 250-pounds when signed to his LOI but now looks to be in the 270’s range now.

So all the summer talk has nearly drawn to a conclusion and the Louisville Cardinals are lurking in wait to converge on Commonwealth Stadium with an unafraid Cat on the prowl!

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