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LSU's Sanders makes strides

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LSU's Sanders makes strides

Injured linebacker back in action; Davis misses both practices

Thursday, August 17, 2006

By Jim Kleinpeter

BATON ROUGE -- It wasn't easy being green for LSU junior linebacker Luke Sanders, but he is ready to go full speed.

Sanders, recovering from knee surgery last spring, has worn a green jersey signifying no contact in practice. But he donned his normal purple jersey in Wednesday afternoon's practice, the second of two workouts. He is expected to start for the Tigers at middle linebacker.

Sanders was held out of Tuesday's 20-play scrimmage as a precaution and might be available for the first major scrimmage set for Saturday.

"I'm close to 100 percent," he said between practices Wednesday. "I don't know how many live reps I'm going to get. It feels good. Contact feels good, making cuts feels good. It feels better and better every day."

Said defensive coordinator Bo Pelini: "We're keeping him away from the live stuff to keep him from getting rolled up. That's going to change pretty soon. We'll be taking the green off of him. It's more of a precautionary thing, making sure confidence-wise he's exactly where he needs to be."

"His knee is going to hold up. It's a process to get him over that mental block. I think he has."

Pelini said he and Sanders will meet with Coach Les Miles and the trainers before making a decision on Saturday's scrimmage, which is scheduled for about 100 full-speed, contact plays.

"It's between him and the trainers," Pelini said. "I feel comfortable where he is. I do know he'll be ready for the opener."

Sanders tore the medial collateral and posterior collateral ligaments in his right knee when a lineman fell on his leg during spring drills. Freshmen Jacob Cutrera and Kelvin Sheppard have worked at Sanders' spot in his absences.

INJURY REPORT: Senior wide receiver Craig Davis missed both practices Wednesday with a hamstring injury.

Also, junior wide receiver Early Doucet sat out the morning session with a groin injury but was full speed for the afternoon workout.

WORTH REPEATING: "People call me Goliath and him David." -- LSU sophomore guard Herman Johnson, 6 feet 7, 351 pounds, on 5-5, 159-pound freshman wide receiver Trindon Holliday.

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