ATHENS, Ga. — It was Aaron Murray's first real action as Georgia's starting quarterback inside Sanford Stadium. There were maybe 20 people in the stands. And no media.
But relying on coach Mark Richt, his teammates and Murray himself, his first preseason scrimmage went well.
Murray, a redshirt freshman and former Plant High star, threw two touchdowns to A.J. Green.
"I felt more comfortable in the pocket (Tuesday)," said Murray, who went 12-of-21 for 237 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. "That's been my biggest thing, just relaxing and trusting (the offensive line), so that's what I did. … And when there was pressure, just let those guys make the necessary blocks."
Murray admitted that much of his strategy was simply getting the ball to Green. Both scores were more than 60 yards, one a short route in which Green took the rest, another in which Green beat the coverage downfield.
"It's pretty nice the plays he makes," Murray said. "It definitely makes things easier."
Green returned the praise, saying he liked Murray's presence on the field: "He was very confident, real poised."
Report: Saban bans NFL teams from visits
Last month, Alabama coach Nick Saban threatened to restrict access to NFL teams if the league did nothing to curb rogue player-agents and their assistants from running roughshod on campuses.
Now several NFL teams have been told their scouts are no longer welcome at Alabama, profootballtalk.com reported. Saban said he might temporarily rescind the ban in the next week.
W.Va. checks violation: West Virginia is investigating whether players wore more gear than just helmets during the first two days of practice, which would be a violation of NCAA rules. The team began practice Saturday, two days after the NCAA alleged the Mountaineers committed five major violations and one secondary violation from 2005 to 2009.
Paterno up for honor: Penn State coach Joe Paterno was nominated for the country's highest civilian award. Congressmen including Glenn Thompson, Mark Critz and Tim Holden say the Hall of Fame coach deserves a Presidential Medal of Freedom for his service to the Nittany Lions, the university and the State College community. Paterno's 394 wins are most among major college coaches.
Penn State: Sophomore receiver Curtis Drake broke a leg in practice Monday and is expected to be out 6-8 weeks.
South Carolina: Sophomore tailback Jarvis Giles, a former Gaither High standout, had 86 yards and a touchdown in the first preseason scrimmage. … Junior reserve center Ryan Broadhead will likely miss the season after tearing a right knee ligament.
UCLA: Starting guard Jeff Baca is academically ineligible and could miss the season, starting offensive lineman Mike Harris was suspended for the opener, and starting defensive end Datone Jones (broken foot) could be out until at least October.