NCAA Football

Rash Of Ankle Sprains Plaguing Georgia Bulldogs

The Georgia Bulldogs began preparing for the Missouri Tigers on Monday afternoon, albeit with a few missing pieces. Mark Richt and the Bulldogs were lucky enough to head into the season’s first week with one injured player, but were not so lucky coming out of the game against the Buffalo Bulls.

The Monday practice injury report features ten players, five of whom are players in key roles.

Among the injured players on the report were wide receiver Marlon Brown (hamstring), offensive tackles Watts Dantzler (ankle) and John Theus (ankle), running backs Ken Malcome (hand) and Richard Samuel (hip) and cornerback Malcolm Mitchell (ankle). Brown (limited), Malcome and Samuel (limited) were all able to practice Monday. Those with ankle injuries did not practice.

Another similarity between the Bulldogs who did not practice are that they all have left ankle sprains. Dantzler and Theus both injured their ankles against the Bulls, while Mitchell injured his ankle in last Thursday’s practice.

Georgia did not initially reveal a timetable for Mitchell’s injury, but it is possible the cornerback may miss the Missouri game. The Georgia Bulldogs released their weekly depth chart today with Mitchell and freshman Devin Bowman listed at Mitchell’s corner position. Both names were bolded and were separated by the word “OR” in bold letters. This can be taken as a sign that the team is not hopeful Mitchell will be available for this weekend’s tilt. Ankle sprains are known to linger for skill players, which could be bad news for the young corner.

On the other hand, ankle sprains are easier for linemen to overcome.  This may bode well for freshman Theus. Theus started at right tackle for the Bulldogs after a strong performance in fall camp. The Bulldogs are hopeful that he will be able to play against Missouri. Normally, his injury would not matter because the team has a capable backup in Dantzler, but Dantzler is being plagued by the same injury. The next man up at right tackle would be either Mark Beard or Austin Long. However, Theus is listed as the starter on this week’s depth chart, making it safe to assume he will start.

The other three players–Brown, Malcome and Samuel–are expected to be able to play this weekend against the Tigers.

Chris Lionetti covers the Georgia Bulldogs for Rant Sports.

Follow him on twitter at: @ChrisLionetti