A Bright Future For Josh?

The honeymoon will have to wait for Josh Bright and his bride-to-be. The former Delta State quarterback plans to get married on July 20. Five days later he starts his first NFL training camp with the Baltimore Ravens. So instead of sharing candlelit dinners and a hot tub at some island resort with his new wife, Bright will be sharing cafeteria chow and a whirlpool in the training room with his new teammates. Sandra Lynn Lightsey, the future Mrs. Bright, understands and intends to stand by her man. ``I plan on going up there for some of the (preseason) games,'' said Lightsey, who like Bright, grew up in Batesville. Bright was at the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum in Jackson Thursday for a news conference promoting the Conerly Trophy. Bright won the award as the best college football player in Mississippi in 2000, when as a junior he led the Statesmen to a Division II national championship. Bright ran and passed for more than 1,000 yards that season. Injuries slowed him as a senior, but his speed and size caught the attention of professional scouts.

He signed a free-agent contract with the Ravens in the spring. He has already participated in four minicamps. It was a little overwhelming at first. ``It was kind of a different feeling putting on that Ravens jersey and helmet. I'd go out there to practice with guys I've watched on TV,'' he said. ``There's no doubt I was nervous. But after everything got going, there just like me. There football players and pretty good guys.'' The Ravens are trying to turn the 6-foot-5, 245-pound Bright into a tight end. It's strange view for a guy who has always lined up behind the center. ``Putting your hand on the ground is a little different from taking a snap,'' he said. He said running pass patterns and catching the ball have come naturally. Learning to block like a lineman has been a challenge. When Bright signed with the Ravens, they told him he might get a chance to play quarterback. That hasn't happened yet, but he's still hopeful that he'll earn a few snaps. ``It's probably not my first choice to play tight end, but it's an opportunity to play football and that's all I can ask for,'' he said.