Hardy Hamstrung

After a year to understudy as a true freshman, Southern Miss running back took Conference USA by storm grinding out 845 yards on 127 carries on his way to All-CUSA Freshman team honors in 2010. Kendrick is excited about his second year on the field, but spring practice has produced its' share of frustrations for the personable Hardy.

"This spring I am a better player than I was last year," said Hardy. "I am running harder and I am catching the ball better.

"I am still working hard on my blocking and that is something I want to really improve this year." Relegated to the sidelines for now, Hardy has been able to watch his fellow backs go through drills and he has been impressed by their efforts so far.

"Jamal Woodyard has really balled out," said Kendrick. "He is doing a good job and he always plays hard.

"Desmond (Johnson) has had to take all of the reps with the ones since I have been out with a hamstring. It's a lot of work to have to do it by yourself, but he is doing a good job."

Kendrick believes that the Southern Miss' offense has the chance to improve on last year's 3rd best scoring effort in Conference USA.

"Everybody is doing well," said Hardy. "A.D. (Austin Davis) is looking real good and everybody is stepping up around him.

"We still have some work to do on the offensive line because we lost some guys, but they are going to get it worked out. They are just trying to find out where everybody fits."

After a bowl appearance last year, Hardy is looking for bigger and better things in 2011.

"I feel like we can go all of the way," said Kendrick. "Everybody is working hard to get better. We lost some good players last year, but there are some other guys stepping up into their spots and doing a good job.

"I am excited about this season. I feel like it's going to be a great year for us."

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