GAINESVILLE -- Since training camp, No. 18 Florida has lost six players --
four starters -- to season-ending injuries.
When Dominique Easley tore his right anterior cruciate
ligament last Tuesday, it was UF’s third (Andre Debose, Matt Rolin) non-contact
knee injury in six weeks.
While some questioned Florida’s training program, Muschamp
remained adamant the Gators are “doing nothing wrong.”
UF’s head coach said he reevaluated the strength and
conditioning program and talked extensively with medical personnel and chalked
up the injuries to brutal luck.
Muschamp also dismissed the notion Easley was hurt because
of soggy practice conditions (it poured in Gainesville last Tuesday) -- quieting
the angry townspeople demanding an indoor practice facility.
Muschamp’s full statement on UF’s run of injuries…
“We’re constantly looking at those things. You go back. I
went back. You’re always looking from a strength and conditioning standpoint
the things you’re doing. I’ve been asked the question about the ACLs. I did
date research after Matt and Andre both had [theirs] within a four-five day
period ACLs, totally non-contact situations, plant and change direction. No. 1,
football is a very violent game. Guys have gotten stronger, their bodies have
gotten stronger. Sometimes it’s harder for their bodies to hold based on the
orthopedic surgeons I talk to. Sometimes things just happen. In our first two
years here, we had two ACLs with Dominique Easley against Florida State when he
was rolled up down there in the south end zone. Then you had Ronald Powell in
the spring game [in 2012]. That was it. We’ve had three in two months.
“There’s nothing that we can look at from a standpoint of
strength and conditioning that shows any information that would show you
something’s not going right. We also look at shoulder injuries from a
standpoint of, a lot of the shoulder injuries, we’ve had six since we’ve been
here in three years and four of them had labrums coming into Florida. That’s a
preexisting situation. Also a preexisting situation as you look at Ronald’s
re-tear and you look also from the situation with Matt Rolin. Matt had an ACL
in high school. Your percentage of patella tendon, tying the ACL back is
1-of-12 change for re-tear. If you use a cadaver, it’s 1-of-4. So all of those
things, when you’ve had a preexisting injury, which we’ve had in a lot of those
situations, there’s a chance for that to happen. I’m not saying that it should
happen again, I’m just being realistic here.
“But two in three years is good. You never want it to
happen. Two in three months, then you’re scratching your head a little bit in
how you practice and are you practicing the right way. It’s three non-contact
situations. It’s a guy planting and changing directions, that can happen in the
offseason program. That can happen walking to class. They’re gonna go to class.
We constantly evaluate those situations, absolutely. And making sure we’re
going the right things. I’ve pulled our medical staff in, our strength staff
in. I’ve consulted with outside orthopedics to make sure and watch the film in
certain situations. There’s nothing we’re doing wrong.”
*** NOTE *** Not saying Muschamp is incorrect, but I have
yet to confirm the statistics he offered on ACL re-tears.
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