Cajuns Wrap Up Second Week Of Spring Practice

LAFAYETTE – The Louisiana Ragin' Cajuns football team wrapped up its second week of practice on Saturday, holding a two-hour workout in full gear on the Ragin' Cajuns practice fields.

With many players returning from a team that finished 9-4 overall and included a Sun Belt Conference championship and third consecutive victory in the R+L Carriers New Orleans Bowl, fourth-year head coach Mark Hudspeth is looking for many of the team's newcomers to battle for playing time.

"The veterans are practicing at a pretty high level, but we're still waiting for some guys to really take that next step with the two's and three's," Hudspeth said. "We'd like to see some of those guys become a little more physical. We've given them a few opportunities, and they haven't been as physical as I would have liked.

"Hopefully, in these next three weeks, we can get a little bit more of that out of them. This is the time that we've got to develop some toughness and develop some guys that will play at a very high level, but play very physical on both sides of the ball."

The Ragin' Cajuns return one of the most dynamic tandems at running back in Alonzo Harris and Elijah McGuire. The duo combined for over 1,800 yards rushing with 22 touchdowns on the ground in 2013 in earning first-team All-Sun Belt Conference honors.

Louisiana also return juniors Torrey Pierce and Effrem Reed, giving the Cajuns a stable of running backs to use at opponents in 2014.

"We know who our starting two are," Hudspeth said. "But I know that Effrem Reed and Torrey Pierce are both having good camps, (former running back) Montrel Carter is doing some nice things over at the corner spot. I think that move was good for him. Our main goal is to keep our starters healthy, develop some depth and bring some young guys on to make them better players."

Returning letterwinner Jamal Robinson caught 54 passes and was named second-team All-Sun Belt Conference in 2013, and with the return of senior James Butler, the Ragin' Cajuns return two of their top three receivers. Hudspeth is looking for contributions from several returning players, including sophomore Devin Scott, who played in nine games last season.

"Those two guys are practicing at a very high level," Hudspeth said of Robinson and Butler. "We know what those guys can do and that we can count on them. We need the younger kids to really take that next step. Devin Scott is having a really good camp … he's been exciting to watch. He's going to push for playing time if he continues at that pace."

Louisiana will open its third week of spring practice on Tuesday with workouts slated for Thursday and Saturday. The annual Spring Game is scheduled for Saturday, April 12 in Cajun Field.

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