Ellington vows to ramp up double duty

WR/PG also encouraging Gill, Harris to remain with Gamecocks

April 12, 2012 

University of South Carolina's Bruce Ellington prepares to run through drills during practice

C. ALUKA BERRY — caberry@thestate.com

Not only will Bruce Ellington play two sports for South Carolina again next season, but this time he plans to throw himself into football and basketball even more.

“Last year I wanted to see how it would go playing both, but this year I am going to do more,” Ellington said. This summer “I am going to work out with the football team in the morning and probably work out with the basketball team in the afternoon.”

Ellington spoke Thursday for the first time since Frank Martin was hired as the Gamecocks’ basketball coach. Last summer, Ellington spent all his time on football in preparation for his return to the field, and he doesn’t think this year’s extended double duty will be any problem.

“I can go all day,” he said. “I don’t take any days off.”

Martin gave Ellington his blessing to again play football even though it means he will miss all of preseason basketball practice and several non-conference games, but Ellington realizes Martin probably will recruit and sign another point guard this spring as a backup plan.

“I think he’s going to go find him another guy,” Ellington said.

Ellington already is doing some recruiting for the basketball team, encouraging teammates Anthony Gill and Damontre Harris to stay with the Gamecocks, he said. Gill has been given permission by Martin to explore a transfer.

“It’s their decision,” Ellington said. “They know what’s best for them. I can’t argue with them about that. I encouraged them to stay, but they are going to make their own decision.”

Ellington considered transferring after Darrin Horn was fired, he said.

“But I am a diehard Gamecock fan so I am going to stay here and play,” he said.

Ellington had 211 receiving yards, 106 rushing yards and 463 kickoff return yards last season, while averaging 11 points in 24 games with the basketball team.

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