April 14, 2006

Crum keeps open mind on position

Last year Maurice Crum just worried about getting on the field.

These days Notre Dame's sophomore linebacker is learning two new positions, trying to improve the overall defense and helping the program's younger defenders get up to speed all while recovering from off-season back surgery.

Increased responsibility always accompanies veteran status, but it rarely comes this quickly. Crum said he's up to the task even if he's not cleared for full contact in any of Notre Dame's 15 spring practices. Crum went under the knife soon after the Fiesta Bowl with plans to return to full strength well before fall camp opens in August.

"I'm fine, it's just precautionary," Crum said. "I just kind of have to know what I can and cannot do. For the most part I just can't hit. I don't want to mess anything up."

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