Practice report: Spurrier sports Red Sox cap; Ellington excels

Weather could threaten Thursday's workout

jkendall@thestate.comApril 2, 2013 

— South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier’s headwear has long mad fashion in Columbia.

On Tuesday, the Gamecocks' ninth-year coach wore a Boston Red Sox cap, and it was only partially in honor of former South Carolina baseball star Jackie Bradley Jr.

“I played in a charity golf event back in February down in Fort Myers, Fla., the Red Sox, most all the guys were there. In fact, I got to meet Jim Rice,” Spurrier said. “They sent me a hat today. I said if you send it, I’ll wear it.”

Spurrier did note Bradley Jr.’s opening day effort. The former Gamecock walked three times, scored twice and drove in a run Monday as the Red Sox beat the New York Yankees 8-2.

“He was the star of the show yesterday I guess, or one of the stars,” Spurrier said. “I guess I pull for the Red Sox a little bit, not like those Bostoners do.”

Everyday Ellington

Junior Bruce Ellington was the star of the Gamecocks’ scrimmage snaps on Tuesday. Ellington missed the first two weeks of spring practice while transitioning from basketball but has picked up right where he left off as the team’s leading returning receiver.

“I had to get him out. He wants to go every rep,” Spurrier said. “He was making diving catches, fell on his back and his head one time. Gotta hold him out a little more, he jumps in there more than he needs to.”

Warming up

Tuesdays’ warmer temperatures sparked a revival in redshirt freshman quarterback Brendan Nosovitch and several Gamecocks, Spurrier said.

“Brendan Nosovitch had a much better day today than he’s had,” Spurrier said. “He’s been a little hesitant out here, but the weather has been cold and windy. This warm weather helps the quarterbacks, it really does.”

South Carolina practiced three times last week in biting winds.

“Our players and our coaches were happy to see some sunshine, some pretty warm weather,” Spurrier said.

Extra points

... The Gamecocks will either move Thursday’s practice to their indoor facility or cancel it due to the threat of rain. The public and media are not allowed at the team’s indoor practices.

... Wide receiver K.J. Brent, defensive back Ronnie Martin (hamstring), wide receiver Damiere Byrd (hamstring) and defensive tackle J.T. Surratt (illness) did not practice Tuesday.

... Spurrier praised wide receiver Shaq Roland’s practice for the second workout in a row.

... Starting quarterback Connor Shaw, who is out this spring after having foot surgery, will be fully healthy in time for individual workouts starting in June, Spurrier said.

Video: Steve Spurrier from Tuesday

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