August 11, 2006

Buffs don full pads for first time

BOULDER, Colo. - Thomas Perez was once again in street clothes at the beginning of Friday's practice, the Buffs' first full padded workout of preseason camp. The Junior College transfer running back from Compton, Calif., had reached the peak of his frustration.

"On a scale of one to ten, probably 100," Perez said when asked just how frustrated he was. "But everything happens for a reason so I have been trying my best to study the playbook and when my time comes, I'll be ready."

His time came less than an hour later. Perez received news that his associate's degree had been received by CU, meaning he was cleared to begin practice.

"We punched it in," head coach Dan Hawkins said in regards to Perez' situation. "We needed the fifth down to get 'er in, but we got 'er in. I knew it was just a matter of time. Unfortunately you go through this every year. For whatever reason there is always something like this. You can't control it so you just go with it and eventually you get the guy going and you are up and rolling."

Perez' solid 6-foot-1, 220-pound frame had created a buzz among practice spectators this week.

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