BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - Defections, academic casualties and dismissals have taken a toll on UAB's already thin football roster since Neil Callaway's first spring practice as head coach.
The Blazers started the spring with only 49 players who arrived on scholarships, and nine of them are no longer with the team.
Even with Callaway expecting the full 25-player signing class to report in August, UAB will fall well short of the scholarship limit of 85.
Linebacker Kris Guyton and defensive back Gershom Bigham have been dismissed for violating team rules.
Defensive linemen Cortlin Johnson and Todd Howanitz, tight end Justin Cofer and linebacker Jeffery Williams are academically ineligible.
Defensive lineman Brandon Madden and defensive back Corey Jones have left the team.
Receivers Willie Edwards and Steven Brown left the team before spring.
Now, linebacker and the defensive line have taken hits, too. Guyton was listed Number One at strongside lienbacker and Williams was expected to be a key backup.
Johnson was expected to start at defensive tackle.
Callaway anticipates having to play freshman. He said that while the team will be short on numbers, he is happy with the players he does have.
(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)