Fullback Iona Pritchard, who suffered a serious leg injury during a scrimmage last August, is still not healthy enough to participate in spring drills. But Mendenhall is hopeful that Pritchard will be ready by next fall.
And O'Neill Chambers, who was suspended from the team during the 2010 team, and was not part of the program in 2011, will be able to practice this spring with the Cougars. How he performs, on and off the field, will determine if he will be able to play this fall, Mendenhall said.
The Cougars will hold 15 practices through March 30, which will mark Alumni Day. The spring game will be staged on March 24 at LaVell Edwards Stadium.
"Our players and coaches are excited to start practices again," Mendenhall said. "We have a lot of senior leadership, I believe we have a strong team coming back and looking forward to continuing to improve our program … Our loyalties and friendships are so strong with our current team, you can't wait to get back with them. We're all excited."
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