Few Surprises as FIU Football Starters are Identified

(fiusports.com) - The FIU Football team began preparation for next week's season opener against Jacksonville University during a two-hour practice in shorts and shoulder pads at FIU Stadium.

Afterwards, there were little in the way of surprises when head coach Don Strock named his starting lineup against the Dolphins. Sophomore Josh Padrick (Merritt Island) was named starting quarterback and senior Rashod Smith (Miami/Northwestern), who has remained healthy for all of fall practice, will be the featured running back.

Smith, the only running back in Golden Panther history to rush for more than 1,000 yards over a two-year career, had a career night two years ago against JU when he ran for a school-record 262 yards on 21 carries.

Senior Harold Leath (Tampa) and junior Cory McKinney (DeLand) will man the wide receiver spots and sophomore Samuel Smith (Miami/Gulliver Prep) won the battle for starting tight end, replacing junior Joe Struyf (Marathon) who in all likelihood will be lost for the season after undergoing groin surgery.

Strock also addressed those players whose names were not included on the starting team saying their times would come.

"A lot of guys are going to play on both sides of the ball, as always happens," he said. "I tell the players all the time, just because you're not in the starting group, doesn't mean you're not going to play. You've always got to be ready."

Linebacker Alexander Bostic III (Miami/Norland) remained on the sidelines Thursday with a left great toe infection and offensive lineman Tad McConahie (Merritt Island) is still recuperating from a mild concussion.

The team returns to the practice field Friday from around 9:00 to 11:00 a.m.

Season tickets and seats for the Jacksonville game are available at all Ticketmaster outlets, the Golden Panther Arena Ticket Office, charge by phone via Ticketmaster in Miami-Dade at (305) 358-5885, in Broward at (954) 523-3309, in Palm Beach at (561) 966-3309 or online at ticketmaster.com and FIUsports.com.

By The Source
Aug 27, 2004
© Copyright 2004-2005 www.miamifootball365.com

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