We are only two weeks into the college football season and schools from Tallahassee to Miami and from Tampa to Gainesville there are questions about prominent players health.
For Florida State, head coach Jimbo Fisher confirmed to the media Tuesday that the Noles will be without star Safety Derwin James for several weeks. He injured his knee in the 3rd quarter of the blow out win over Charleston Southern. In addition to being a starter he brings play maker mentality to the FSU D. But for now, he’s in the rest and rehab mode.
In Miami, the Canes have had two easy wins at home and may have a trap waiting in Carolina Mountains, as they take on Appalachian State Saturday. Miami is already without starting DT Courtel Jenkins sidelined with a meniscus injury in his knee, but now they add arguably there most aggressive defender in the back seven of the defense with fifth year-senior Adrian Colbert nursing the same meniscus injury. New Head Coach Mark Richt will have his hands full on several fronts this Saturday.
At USF, the Bulls venture on the road for the first time when they hit the Carrier Dome for Syracuse. And the midweek good news is that all world running back Marlon Mack appears that he will be back at least to carry some in Western New York. Mack, who gained 1,400 yards a year ago, returned to practice after clearing concussion protocol. The USF junior was crunched by a Towson defender in the first half of game one and suffered not only the blow to the head but an upper chest injury. With FSU looming in two weeks at home, the Bulls need Mack healthy and carving up defenses again.
Finally in Gator country, it doesn’t look like star WR Antonio Callaway will be able to play or at least be effective, in the game Saturday with North Texas. The sophomore, who is the top Florida return threat as well, injured his quad in the Kentucky game last week and was limping in practice Tuesday afternoon. Those are typically 2-4 week injuries depending on the severity, which means he should be better for the early showdown in Knoxville, but more importantly for the full slate of the SEC. For now, though, it’s hope and wait.
You can scheme, prepare, dial up the best stuff, but you have to have the best players to succeed and while none of the above seem to be season threatening injuries, they are a reminder of the ultimate unknown: who’s hurt?