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Spring Practice #9, March 21, 2012

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Coach Justin Fuente moved practice up about an hour or so today to try and beat the storms that were anticipated to arrive in Memphis. While there were spurts of rain throughout the workout, the squad got the full practice in for their ninth of 15 practices this spring.

Before practice today, we sat down for some interviews with kicker Paulo Henriques and punter Tom Hornsey. Check out the videos below as both talk about spring practice and working with Coach James Shibest. Henriques also talks about becoming a U.S. citizen this past December and what that meant to him and his family.

Special teams is a phase that the Tigers return quite a few key standouts. Henriques will be looking for a stellar senior season after going 8-of-15 on field goals in 2011. He missed his first two attempts of the season (both 50 yarders) before hitting seven of his next eight attempts, including a career-best 50-yard shot against Rice. Henriques also handles kickoffs for the Tigers and booted 45 kicks for an average of 64 yards. He had eight touchbacks on the year.

Hornsey continues to blaze through the Tiger record book, setting records for punts (95) and yards (3,993) in a single season. In just 24 career games, Hornsey ranks fifth in punts (175) and fourth in yards (7,409). In 2011, he averaged 42 yards per punt and had 19 for 50-plus yards. He dropped 23 kicks inside the opponents' 20-yard line. He is expected to be a Ray Guy Award candidate again in 2012. Hornsey and Henriques also have the benefit of having long snapper Jeremy Singler and holder Austin Weaver back again in '12.

The Tigers have six more practices remaining, including the Blue-Gray Game on March 31. Festivities on Tiger Lane will begin at 10 a.m., and the Tigers will begin their workout in the stadium at about 12 p.m. There will also be a free kids clinic for all children eighth grade and under following the scrimmage. All events, and the parking around the stadium, are free and open to the public. For more information about the spring game, please check out this link: http://www.gotigersgo.com/sports/m-footbl/spec-rel/032012aab.html

Please check out the video below as Coach Fuente spoke with the media following today's practice. He talks about the squad continuing to get better and also spoke a good bit about the receivers.

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