Macklin Can't Shake the Injury Bug

Vernon Macklin can't remember the last day he didn't speak with trainer Dave Werner about an injury. The timetable isn't clear since he has spends what feels like a majority of every day in the training room getting treatment on multiple injuries. No player wants to develop a close relationship with the trainer, but Macklin hasn't had a choice this season.

"It's tough," Macklin said, shaking his head. "It seems like once I get over one injury, another one comes. I'm going to work with our trainer until I get 100%. I'm pretty sure before we end the season I'll be 100%. Playing against physical guys and practicing against Pat (Young) every day, it's tough."

The injury bug started with a knee problem earlier in the season. The pain was so bad that head coach Billy Donovan talked about the possibility of shutting Macklin down for a month to let it heal. Macklin spoke with the trainers, who decided he could play as much as he could tolerate the pain.

"Oh, that's getting better," Vernon Macklin said with surprising excitement that one of his injuries is healing. "My rehab is coming along real good. I'm getting my lift back."

As the knee felt better each week, Macklin was struck with a shoulder injury during the Xavier game. His arm got caught on a player running past him, and it pulled his arm backwards behind his body.

Patric Young started the game three days later against Rhode Island, but Macklin still played off the bench. Don't expect him to take any time off soon. He has fought through the injuries all season, and he will continue to during his senior year.

"It's tough for me to not compete," Macklin said. "I went a whole year without competing when I first got here. I don't think anything can stop me from playing with my team unless it's a really serious injury."

When the shoulder injury is healed, Macklin doesn't plan to skip any days in the training room. He knows that there will be another injury on the way. Even if it's nothing big, Macklin plans to maintain the relationship he has built with Werner to avoid future injuries.

He was in the training room for treatment every day during preseason practices to limit the potential injuries. Now that the injuries have crept in, the treatment wasn't a surprise.

"Even when I'm feeling okay, I still go in there," Macklin said. "It's always get good to get treatment before and after practice so you don't find out about new bumps and bruises."

As the team practices now, Macklin will show up early for treatment and to be taped to practice with the least amount of pain. When practice is over, it's back to the treatment room. He has iced so many parts of his body this year that he can't put a number on it.

"It doesn't even feel cold for me," Macklin said. "I can put it on something and not even feel it anymore."

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