The Latest on Clarett

Here's the latest on Maurice Clarett as Coach Tressel spoke to the media about the situation.

Maurice Clarett underwent arthroscopic knee surgery today. While that is of course not good news, it is nothing to freak out about. As far as knee surgeries go, this is about as minor as it gets. Here's what Jim Tressel had to say about Clarett's situation.

"Maurice got nicked a little bit in the first quarter and our trainers told us during the first quarter that it was his knee and he could finish the game, but they were going to need to take a good look over the weekend to see if it was going to flare up and so forth," Tressel said. "There was a little bit of swelling over the weekend, enough that our physicians felt like they needed to do an MRI. They knew what the injury was, or they thought they knew, but they needed to take a look at an MRI. Maurice had a little bit of a meniscus tear, which, I'm not a doctor, but it's something that four or five of our guys had last year. Chris Vance had a meniscus tear during the season, as did Donnie Nickey and Lydell Ross. It's a very normal thing. With Maurice, it's the type of thing that was an old injury that might have gotten further banged on. So, we decided last night to go ahead and have that scoped. We had it scoped this morning, which is a procedure that could have him back for (the UC) game, or could make him not be here for the game. So, as we stand here today, Maurice would be questionable.


"The procedure went well and the injury was a little bit old from who knows how long ago and got little bit aggravated when he got hit in the first quarter of the ballgame. They felt that the repair went fine and he's already began his re-hab. The first day you don't want to do too much, but after that, it's a matter of doing everything you can to get back. So, we should have a good feel by Thursday. I'm sure he won't practice today, tomorrow would be iffy, but Thursday is a possibility and we would know by the end of Thursday's practice what his status will be for the ballgame," Tressel said.


Once you get over the initial shock of hearing "Clarett" and "knee surgery" in the same sentence, the thing that really stands out about all of this is the fact that Clarett got hurt in the first quarter of the WSU game. That means he piled up over 200 yards on a bum knee. That tells you how tough this kid is and makes you wonder what would have happened to the Cougars with No. 13 at 100 percent.


As for what to expect from this injury, I just caught a radio interview with NFL tight end Ken Dilger on the way home from practice. Dilger has suffered a torn meniscus three times in his career and says that it's not a very serious injury. Dilger says he was able to come back within two weeks each time and with a young guy like Clarett, the recovery should be even quicker than that.


Despite those encouraging words, I don't think we should expect to see Clarett against the Bearcats. Why risk it? Especially with guys like Lydell Ross, Maurice Hall and Ja Ja Riley ready to step in. Look for Clarett to return for the Big Ten opener against Indiana on Sept. 28 although I'm sure he will be lobbing for playing time this Saturday. It's just his warrior mentality.


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