Bulldogs return to the practice field for the first day of fall camp

      CHARLESTON, S.C.{}-(CITADEL) -- The Citadel football team kicked off fall camp on Monday morning with the first official practice at the Maybank Triplets Practice Facility at Willson Field.

      The squad, led by ninth-year head coach Kevin Higgins, returns 38 lettermen from last year's team including 18 starters. Among the starters returning are preseason all-conference defensive tackle{}Derek Douglas, quarterback{}Ben Dupree{}and B-back{}Darien Robinson. Paving the way for the running game, which averaged 300.6 yards per game a season ago, will be five fifth-year seniors in{}Cullen Brown,{}Jim Knowles,{}Devin Bice,Keith Carter{}and{}Robert Finke.

      Monday's practice welcomed moderate morning weather with temperatures in the low 80s. No injuries were reported for the two-and-a-half hour workout.

      "It was a good first day. Obviously we've got some experienced guys out here on the field, said Higgins. "From an offensive standpoint, the execution from the quarterback to the running back position was very good.

      "We are trying to improve on our explosive plays this year," added Higgins. "You can't say enough about the importance of experienced guys at the quarterback position at any level. They have been there before and understand."

      "It felt good to get back out here and get back to working on things," said Robinson. "There is always room for improvement and as a team we want to make sure we can capitalize on our opportunities."

      The Citadel will practice from 8-10:30 a.m. for the remainder of the week before taking a break on Sunday, Aug. 11 for media day followed by the annual Coke Zero Meet the Bulldogs at Johnson Hagood Stadium. {}The fun community event will begin at 2 p.m. when players will be available to sign autographs and talk to the fans.

      The Citadel will open up the 2013 campaign on Aug. 31 at 6 p.m. at home against crosstown foe Charleston Southern. {}To purchase single game or season tickets, call the ticket office at (843) 953-DOGS (3647).