Nick Davison has been on the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga football team for a little over a year since transferring from UAB.
This spring, with the Mocs' other three starting defensive linemen out while recovering from offseason surgeries, the defensive tackle from Calhoun, Ga., is the veteran of the group.
"It's a little nerve-racking sometimes because we've got young kids that are still learning how to play the college game," the rising senior said following Friday's practice at Finley Stadium.
Playing alongside the 6-foot, 280-pound Davison with the first team are redshirt freshmen Davis Tull and Devin Scates and rising senior De'Markus Lee, who played in only a couple of games. Also getting reps is redshirt freshman Keyon Reed.
There are a lot of young guys around him, but Davison said he likes what he's seen after five practices.
"They're coming along pretty good," he said. "They're all making good strides."
Davison said he had a very productive offseason. He's improved his bench press to a team-high 500 pounds, and his squat of 550 pounds is one of the highest on the team.
"I really dedicated myself to the weight room and just tried to make myself overall a better player," he said. "I also ran a lot, too, to get myself into shape.
"Last year they told me I was going to have to play a lot of snaps, but I didn't think it would be that many. It kind of wore on me a little bit as the season went on."
Scrimmage moved up
The Mocs will conduct their first scrimmage of the spring this afternoon at Finley. Originally scheduled for 7 p.m., the scrimmage has been moved up to 3.
Coach Russ Huesman said the Mocs will run about 90 plays, with the starters on the field nearly half the time.
This and that
Huesman said Friday's practice was "not great," citing a lack of urgency and lackadaisical demeanor from the players. "I wasn't overly thrilled with this one," he said. ... Watching from the sideline was fullback signee Taharin Tyson from Alcoa High School. Tyson said he drove down just to watch practice.