Darden stoic in wake of injury

Colorado wide receiver recruit Jarrod Darden faces a lengthy rehabilitation process after the first serious injury of his life, but he vows to come back sooner than expected and stronger than ever.

Jarrod Darden, a senior at Central High School in Keller, Texas, suffered a fractured fibula and a torn ankle tendon a week ago during practice on a muddy field.

He underwent surgery Friday to repair the damage and doctors have told him it could take as long as a year before he gets back to full speed.

Darden said he plans to be back much sooner.

"When I'm rehabbing I'm going to really work hard on that," he said. "And when I start physical therapy, I'm going to really work hard on that so I can get done faster than normal."

Darden said Colorado coaches called him with encouragement after the injury, telling him they were sorry his senior season ended before it ever really got started. He said they also told him to be diligent in doing what doctors tell him to do.

"This is the first injury I've ever had and the first season I've ever missed," he said. "It's tough, but I'm not as depressed as, I guess, some other kids would be I guess because I know I'm going to play more. And I'm not the kind of person who will get down on myself."

Darden is a 6-foot-5, 205-pound prospect, who made 46 receptions for 739 yards as a junior, and scored 14 touchdowns. He was hoping for an even better year as a senior, and wanted to help his team improve on a 1-9 record during his junior season.

Darden said his focus now has switched to cheering for his teammates, making weekly doctor visits and finishing his high school career strong in the classroom.

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