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Sunday, August 20, 2006


Ailing Irons eager to return:

AUBURN - David Irons' sore hamstring will get its toughest test of fall camp today - when he tries to slip past Auburn's trainers on his way to the practice field.

The All-Southeastern Conference cornerback says he's ready to return to practice after missing more than a week with the injury, though he says the training staff says he can't come back until at least Tuesday.

"It's tender. It's sore. But, man, the game is going to be in two more weeks," he said.

Irons has said he needs to return to practice in order to catch up on what new defensive coordinator Will Muschamp is cooking up for the Sept. 2 opener against Washington State.

Injuries robbed Auburn of all three of its starting linebackers in Saturday's practice. The latest to be sidelined, said coach Tommy Tuberville, was veteran Will Herring with a hamstring pull.

Tuberville called his team a "M*A*S*H unit" after trying to name the stars and reserves who are hurt.

Among them are starting offensive tackle King Dunlap (back), cornerback Jonathan Wilhite (wrist) and wide receiver Courtney Taylor (knee). The Tigers have at least 14 players who have missed some practice time due to injuries.

Offensive line coach Hugh Nall said sophomore Andrew McCain of Briarwood Christian is getting extra work because of Dunlap's injury. Nall also worked left guard Ben Grubbs at Dunlap's left tackle position.

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