March 4, 2007

USC turning the corner in winter workouts

Mark Smith has found nirvana.

South Carolina's strength and conditioning coach is a perfectionist when it comes to making sure the Gamecock football players do everything they're supposed to during the long off-season.

During his first two years, Smith was unable to convince a few skeptical players to give maximum effort in the rigorous daily workouts known as winter conditioning.

And that made him unhappy. But that's not the case anymore.

Citing success on the football field as a significant factor, Smith happily reported this week that participation by Gamecock football players in winter conditioning workouts is now close to 100 percent.

"It's going the best it's gone since we've been here," Smith said. "Everybody has been doing what we've asked them to do. Everybody is working hard. There are no problems. The intensity level is good. There's great participation."

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