Tuesday, December 15, 2009

South Carolina Shrine Bowl team is beastly

Sorry this is a little late, but the Shrine Bowl Game—which ostensibly pits the best seniors in North Carolina against their counterparts in S.C., ran late with its morning practice at Roebuck Dorman High, near Spartanburg. I’m down here, so I was late with them.

You would have to say the Tar Heels are behind their rivals on this Tuesday, because head coach Jim Oddo (of Charlotte Catholic) is installing his Wing-T offense, and most of his players come from systems that ran pro-style or spread offenses.

It needs to work for North Carolina because South Carolina has a bigger and more talented team, from what I saw at practice.

I love the practice setup; the two teams work out on fields side by side. So you can see North Carolina wide receiver Lamar Ivey make a sparkling diving catch, then turn around and watch South Carolina cornerback John Fulton bat the ball away from receiver Martavis Bryant on the other field.

It’s very informal here; I spoke to a number of players during water breaks in the middle of the workout. Fulton, for instance, took a drink and then said he has his college choices down to South Carolina, Alabama and Florida. He would not name a favorite from among the three.

One of N.C.’s quarterbacks, Anthony Carrothers of Independence, missed much of Monday’s afternoon practice with a shoulder injury, but was back today and looked fine.

Lots, lots more to come from here, but I’ve got to grab some lunch and get back for the 2 p.m. session.

The game, by the way, is Saturday at 1 p.m., at Wofford.

--Stan Olson

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