Miami's Johnson finally returns after hamstring injuryPosted: Monday August 19, 2002 10:44 AM
Updated: Monday August 19, 2002 1:12 PM
CORAL GABLES, Fla. (AP) -- Receiver Andre Johnson participated in contact drills Sunday with the top-ranked Miami Hurricanes after spending most of the week on the sidelines with a slightly pulled hamstring.
Johnson worked with the first and second units on Sunday. He had been out since Monday, when he was injured in practice.
Johnson, a 6-foot 3-inch, 227-pound junior, was limited, but he still impressed coaches with his play.
"We want to push him some but not over do it, but he really came back well," said coach Larry Coker.
Expected to start opposite Johnson is Kevin Beard, who sustained a thigh bruise during Saturday morning's scrimmage but practiced on Sunday.
Coker was upset about some dropped passes during that scrimmage, but said that Miami's top four receivers -- Johnson, Beard, Ethenic Sands and Roscoe Parish -- will be fine.
With Johnson out, the others combined for just four catches on Saturday.
Running back Jarrett Payton, out since the beginning of practice with back spasms, underwent an MRI exam to get a clearer picture of the injury.
Payton would battle converted receiver Jason Geathers for time behind starter Willis McGahee.
Injured Rebel starters expected to return for opener
OXFORD, Miss. (AP) -- Five Mississippi starters, including linebacker Eddie Strong and wide receiver Chris Collins, are expected to miss some practice time this week because of injuries, but all are expected to be ready for the first game. Strong turned his left ankle during the team's scrimmage Saturday and left Vaught-Hemingway Stadium on crutches.
L.P. Spence took Strong's middle linebacker spot and made seven tackles.
Wide receiver and kick returner Jason Armstead suffered a similar injury to his right ankle at practice earlier last week.
Collins, the team's leading receiver last year, and Lanier Goethie, the team's top tackler, are both nursing hamstring injuries. Fullback Toward Sanford (leg) is also expected to be sidelined this week.
"I don't think that anybody's a threat right now to miss our first game," Ole Miss coach David Cutcliffe said. "But you'd still like to have them back out here getting their work. On some, it's being cautious to try to make sure that we have them by the first of next week."
The Rebels open against Louisiana-Monroe Aug. 31 at home.
Chronic shoulder injuries spell end for A&M's Perot
COLLEGE STATION, Texas (AP) -- Tight end Joey Perot is giving up college football after his third shoulder injury in three years, Texas A&M coach R.C. Slocum said Sunday.
"Joey has worked so hard twice before to bounce back from injuries, and to have this happen a third time breaks my heart," Slocum said.
Slocum said Perot, a sophomore from Petal, Miss., would be placed on a medical scholarship and will remain in school.
Perot said he decided to stop playing after visiting with the medical staff and coaches.
Perot injured his shoulder in practice as a freshman in 2000. Last fall, he played in two games before suffering a season-ending surgery on the same shoulder. He injured the shoulder again in practice Thursday.
Slocum also said Sunday that junior Andre Brooks will move from right tackle to left guard in place of Billy Yates, who is expected to be out six weeks with a broken left arm. Yates broke the arm during Saturday's scrimmage.
Junior Alan Reuber will take over at right tackle.
So. Miss QB White gets extra year of eligibility
HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) -- Southern Mississippi quarterback Zac White, who missed nearly all of last season with a back injury, has been granted an additional year of eligibility from the NCAA. Southern Miss Associate Athletic Director for Athletic and Academic Compliance Don Oberhelman said the NCAA granted White a medical hardship waiver.
White is competing with Micky D'Angelo and Dustin Almond for the starting position this season.
White was the backup for Jeff Kelly as a freshman in 2000. Last year, White threw six passes against Louisiana-Lafayette in the second game of season and didn't play again.
Medical hardships are given to players who are injured to the point they can't return to action after playing less than 20 percent of the season.
"I'm happy that the NCAA granted him the waiver so he could have the year of eligibility back and not have his college career cut short, because of an injury," Golden Eagles coach Jeff Bower said.