VALDOSTA -- Valdosta State opened football practice Wednesday on North Campus, experiencing a rain-shortened afternoon and one health scare.

The Blazers did complete their physical testing during the first 90 minutes. Less than 10 minutes into the second session, the team was pulled off the fields because of an impending thunderstorm. The session was completed at the Old Gym.

"We wanted to get the testing in," said head coach Chris Hatcher. "We did want to go through the practice drills to show the new players what we do, so we'd be crisp (Thursday)."

One-half hour after his testing was completed, defensive end Don Page became ill. He was eventually treated in the sports medicine area near the ROTC building, then transferred by ambulance to South Georgia Medical Center.

Page was given an IV and had tests run, then released to return in time for the team's evening meeting, Hatcher said.

"He's fine. He wanted to make it back for the meeting and the snack," Hatcher said. "It wasn't heat exhaustion, but more physical exhaustion. He had passed the physical test.

"We'll keep him out of practice (today) and he'll be back Friday."

Page is another former Division I player in the Blazers' program. The Foley, Ala., native originally signed with Auburn, and he lettered at Central Florida in 2000. Wednesday was his first VSU practice.

In accordance with new NCAA regulations, VSU will have three more acclimation days before the first full-pads workout Sunday (North Campus, 2:15 p.m.).


In Wednesday's Valdosta Daily Times, a number of players were listed who will not be part of the 2003 team. It was incorrectly stated that six players were off the team because of academic problems.

Three of the six players either were dismissed from the team or requested a release so they could transfer, school officials said Wednesday.

The Daily Times regrets the error.


Hatcher's Monday night radio show is moving to another Remerton establishment.

The Coca-Cola Chris Hatcher Show will be broadcast from The Remerton Grille from 7-8 p.m. Mondays beginning Aug. 18. The show is hosted by Scott James and broadcast on WWRQ-FM (107.9, Rock 108).

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