COLLEGE PARK -- Larry Webster, a standout junior defensive tackle for the University of Maryland, has been cleared to participate in spring practice and is eligible for the 1991 season, coach Joe Krivak said yesterday.
Webster, 6 feet 5, 277 pounds, was declared academically ineligible earlier in the spring semester after he had failed to meet the university's required grade-point average.
Maryland's standards are higher than those of the National Collegiate Athletic Association. Maryland freshmen are required to have a 1.29 GPA on a 4.0 scale; the requirement is 1.70 for sophomores, 1.85 for juniors and 2.0 for seniors.
Krivak said Webster received an incomplete in a subject but made up the work to complete the course and become eligible. The coach said, however, that Webster will not practice full time in spring practice, which will begin tomorrow.
"We're going to reduce his workload so he can concentrate more on the books," Krivak said. "We want to work things out so there won't be a problem again."
"Larry is a fifth-year player, so I'm not that concerned about him missing spring practice time," Krivak said. "We'll get him as much work as possible in conjunction with his studies."
Webster, an Elkton graduate, is expected to be an All-America candidate next season, and some scouts have projected him as a first-round National Football League draft pick.
He started all 11 regular-season games for Maryland last year, finishing with 38 unassisted tackles, 37 assists, three sacks and two forced fumbles. His forte was stopping the run.
Webster was one of two holdover starters on a strong defensive line, playing opposite junior defensive tackle Lubo Zizakovic.
Krivak also said sophomore defensive tackle/nose guard Darren Drozdov will practice this spring. Drozdov, a starter for the Terps in 1989 who missed last season because of back problems, also was declared academically ineligible but gained his return on appeal.
But Drozdov, 6-2, 270 pounds, still has back problems.
"We're going to watch him on a day-to-day basis and see how it goes," Krivak said. "He will also get as much work as possible."
Reserve defensive tackle Derek Steele has been declared academically ineligible for the spring.