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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Practice Notes: Injury Ends Ros' Career

Bryce Ros spent two years fighting to get healthy, but a foot injury he suffered in high school never seemed to heal. Wednesday, his football career came to an official end when Georgia petitioned the NCAA for a medical exemption that would allow him to stay on scholarship after leaving the team.

"It's just never fun," head coach Mark Richt said of the situation. "It's nothing that anybody looks forward to. But it was just a situation where he couldn't go. He never really fully recovered from it since high school."

Ros, whose father Frank Ros played on Georgia's 1980 national championship team, played tight end at Kennesaw Mountain High School and redshirted last season. He suffered an injury to his right big toe in high school that required surgery, but never fully healed. The injury was determined to be degenerative and would prohibit normal football activities, according to Georgia's trainer Ron Courson.

Once Georgia's petition is accepted by the NCAA, Ros will be allowed to remain on scholarship but will not count toward the 85 scholarship limit for the Bulldogs. Richt said the scholarship will be applied toward next year's signing class.


One week after suffering a minor ankle injury, center Ben Jones has still not returned to practice. Richt said the injury appears to be healing on schedule, however, and he expects Jones to resume some work this week.

"I would hope Friday, but my guess is he'll begin to do some things Friday and Saturday and by Monday he'll be full speed," Richt said.

Jones is expected to be the starting center when Georgia takes on Oklahoma State on Sept. 5, and after starting 10 games last season, Richt said he isn't overly concerned about the missed reps for Jones.

"He's experienced enough, he's far enough in the lead as our No. 1 center that I'm sure we'd let him play if he was deemed healthy on Friday before the game," Richt said. "I don't know if he would start, but I do think he'll be back before then."


Senior safety Bryan Evans was sidelined for nearly 10 days with a hamstring injury, but he's back at work in the secondary, and he said he could soon resume handling kick-return duties, too.

"It's still there, I've just got to get back healthy and I should be healthy by the first game," Evans said. "So if they throw me back there, I'm gonna be there."

Evans said he is one of several Bulldogs, including freshman Branden Smith, sophomore Brandon Boykin, junior Vance Cuff and redshirt freshman Carlton Thomas, working on kick returns.

Evans' roommate, Prince Miller is the leading candidate to handle punt-return duties, and Evans said the two have managed to trade at least a few barbs about who might rack up more return yardage this season.

"We kind of talk about it," Evans said, "but not too much because hopefully when I get back healthy I'll be blocking for him on punt returns and he'll be blocking for me on kickoffs, so it's kind of a mutual thing."


Because Georgia opens against a Big 12 opponent, Richt doesn't have to worry about conference restrictions on the number of players who can travel to Stillwater, Okla. for the Bulldogs' opener, but the logistics of the trip still mean he'll have to limit the roster for the game.

"We looked at a 70 number," Richt said. "If we only could bring 70, we'd be fine, but I do think we'll take a few more than 70. Not a large number, it'll probably be somewhere around 75-ish, give or take."

As to who might be in that group, Richt isn't giving away names. One this he will admit, however, is there will be plenty of freshmen making their first trip with the team.

"I haven't done the math," he said, "but it will be quite a few."


Evans and Reshad Jones both returned to practice this week from hamstring injuries, but their absence last week helped Richt shore up the depth chart at the position, identifying two top backups to handle reserve duty at Oklahoma State.

"I think (Baccari) Rambo and (Sanders) Commings are both capable of playing, and I don't think we have a third guy as much as a backup at each safety spot," Richt said.


Linebacker Akeem Dent remains one of the few Bulldogs still sidelined by a sore hamstring. He said he's feeling better, but the trainers have urged him to remain patient before hitting the field.

"At this point, I'm feeling pretty good, but I'm just getting in the training room and doing everything I can to get back on the field," Dent said. "I'm taking a lot of mental reps to make sure I'm paying attention in the meeting room and then just out there on the field when they're walking through scout team and things like that."

Dent said he isn't like to participate in tomorrow's practice game, but he still expects to have a role on the field.

"I don't think I'll be out there for the Okie State scrimmage," he said, "but I'll still be out there on the sideline coaching up the younger guys and making sure everybody's doing what they're supposed to be doing."


-- Richt said Wednesday that safety Quintin Banks was unlikely to play in Georgia's opener.

-- Left tackle Trinton Sturdivant returned to work after a one-day absence due to illness.

-- Linebacker Darius Dewberry and Aron White were both full speed at practice Wednesday after nursing hamstring injuries.

-- Caleb King missed a 12th straight practice session Wednesday with a sore hamstring.

-- Freshman offensive lineman Chris Burnette sat out a second straight day with an ankle injury, but Richt said it's not serious. "I don't know if he'd go tomorrow or not," Richt said. "I see him jogging around and doing some functional things on the side, so he's not far away. He's not in a boot or crutches or anything."


The media was unexpectedly shut out of practice Tuesday, but there was no subterfuge intended, Richt said.

Georgia spent its entire practice session working on scout team drills to prepare for Oklahoma State, but the word wasn't relayed through the sports information department until after practice began. That meant no reporters, but Richt was quick to say he wasn't mimicking the media blackout instituted by Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy.

"We started our scout team work Period 1, so it was mostly scout-team work," Richt said. "That fundamental work, we don't really care who's out there, but that's why we didn't have anybody out there today."

As for what's ahead: "We had a good day today and we will play a half of football tomorrow," Richt said. "I hope everyone will be excited and that the scouts will play their tails off in the scrimmage."

I'll have details from tomorrow's practice game posted as soon as possible after the action ends.


Anonymous said...

I was just wondering if there is any new news on Cornelius Washington...Haven't heard his name mentioned in a long time and a lot of people on different message boards I read had high expectations for him this year.

David Hale said...

I have a whole story on the young DEs in today's Telegraph actually...