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Hine adjusting to new role

Posted Aug 8, 2011 by Adam Adkins

Updated Aug 9, 2011 at 12:14 AM

VERO BEACH USF continues to work toward finding its best five-man combination on the offensive line, and the first-team option that has been most utilized so far in camp has been with senior OL Chaz Hine sliding over from guard to center.

Hine spent his first four years in the program at guard, and he entered fall camp with exactly the same number of career starts (25) at guard as career snaps at center, which all came during a quick look during spring practice. But Hine has embraced the center position, saying he likes the added responsibility of being the leader of the group that comes with it, and believes he’s quickly becoming acclimated to his new spot.

“I’m getting more and more comfortable every day,” said Hine, a Newsome High product. “It’s starting to grow on me.”

Monday’s workout at the Vero Beach Sports Village, the Bulls first in full pads, gave Hine a better look at his new position and a good indication on what he needs to improve on.

“At center, the angles are a lot different. You’re hitting guys immediately instead of sometimes at guard you get two steps in the ground and you’re hitting somebody,” Hine said. “But at center it’s one step, and you’ve got to get that one step down as soon as possible and if you get those two steps down you’re golden. That’s really the toughest thing with pads on because guys are trying to come down your throat when they’re right up on you. That’s kind of a challenge so far, so I’m working on that.”

When Hine is at center, the rest of the first-team offensive line consists of LT Mark Popek, LG Jeremiah Warren, RG Danous Estenor and RT Quinterrius Eatmon. The other first-team option consists of Hine staying at guard in place of Estenor, and C Kevin McCaskill taking over in the middle.

GLAD TO GET IN WORK: USF’s practice Monday was threatened by some nearby inclement weather, but other than conducting the two-hour workout in a light-but-steady drizzle after a brief delay at the start things went off without a hitch, much to the delight of Bulls coach Skip Holtz.

While Holtz was happy with the all-around effort, he seemed more pleased with the defense.

“I thought the defense did a lot of good things. We started working a little bit more down and distance today, where there’s a win and a loss and you’re not just running plays, and I thought the defense did a really nice job,” Holtz said. “A couple new packages that they’ve put in I think they’re picking it up and they’re adjusting well. We’ve got some guys over there that can really run to the ball.

“Offensively, we’re not there yet. I keep saying this, we need every day before the first game to put it together. But I think these guys are working hard and there’s an awful lot of talent on the offensive side of the ball.”

Holtz did note the work of his receivers, saying he believes the group is one of the most improved on the field right now.

BULLS BITS: USF is scheduled to practice twice Tuesday (at 8:40 a.m. and 7:10 p.m.), the first of two two-a-days scheduled in Vero Beach. … DE Rony Delisca broke his right hand but isn’t expected to miss any significant time. Other players nursing minor injuries include WR Faron Hornes (hamstring), DE Claude Davis (elbow) and FB Armando Sanchez (hand). … Freshman S C.J. Garye was held out of Monday’s practice, but Holtz said he wasn’t aware of an injury to Garye.

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