Per Bellotti, Roper has partially torn MCL

The first question to Mike Bellotti on his Sunday night chat with media was the state of health of quarterback Justin Roper. Bellotti indicated Roper has some swelling some swelling and it will probably be a two to four week process. Bellotti also revealed that Roper has a partial tear of the Medial Collateral Ligament, the MCL.

While the head coach has not yet seen the results of the MRI, he told the reporters that the only reason he is commenting on Roper's injury status is because Roper's parents had already released information about the condition.

"Let me say this to you, the only reason I'm giving you any information is because his parents already told everybody," said Bellotti of Roper's injury. "Otherwise I would not comment other than to say he hurt his knee."

Roper was wearing a brace yesterday but obviously it didn't prevent the injury. The Ducks want the quarterbacks using the brace mainly for protection in the pocket when knee can be locked. Roper left the game in the closing stages of yesterday's 32-26 win over Purdue with the injury to his left knee.

When asked if there were any other injuries from the game the coach's answer was simple, "no."

Bellotti commented on Boise State's coach Chris Peterson a former Duck assistant. Bellotti thought Peterson is very creative, like a mad scientist in the corner drawing up plays. Bellotti thinks Peterson is a good recruiter, a good communicator to his players and has worked with some very good people to hone his craft.

Bellotti sees Peterson a couple of times a year. Bellotti actually recruited Peterson out of high school and junior college unsuccessfully, but was able to get him to help at Oregon.

On BSU Defensive Coordinator Justin Wilcox the Duck alum, Bellotti said one of the toughest things he's had to do at Oregon was toconvince Wilcox's mom that her son should play on the defense instead of playing quarterback. Duck fans are grateful that Bellotti was successful do so as Wilcox is a legend, like his father Dave Wilcox at Oregon for their defensive play.

Speaking of Boise State, Coach Bellotti pointed out that BSU has beaten some of the very best over the last few years including Oklahoma and Oregon State when the Beavers were "very, very good."

On the question of who now plays quarterback the coach said obviously Darron Thomas will start taking snaps in anticipation of playing. The Ducks also have a walk on quarterback Robby Pestal and if necessary would possibly use John Boyett or Max Pond, both whom played quarterback in high school. Thomas has made great strides since the start of fall camp according to the headman.

Bellotti doesn't see any need now to consider using the walk on or the other players in preparing for Boise State.

In regard to the Purdue game, the coach thinks his team made some uncharacteristic mistakes on offense, defense and special teams. By the same token the coach cited Jeremiah Johnson's effort to make a tackle and save a touchdown on an interception and Josh Syria's handling of a poor snap and subsequent soccer style kick that prevented a huge mistake in the punting game.

Purdue is a team that can compete with anybody in the Big Ten and Bellotti thinks that they are much better than anyone thought.

Regarding the disparity between the Ducks' ranking in the AP Poll (17) and the Coaches' (12) is a mystery to Bellotti because normally the polls are normally very close in rankings.

On the Pac-10's performance this last weekend Bellotti hasn't seen any of the games but he was surprised by the outcomes particularly with the big loss by UCLA.

"It's crazy and just the state of college football," observed Bellotti on the competitiveness in the sport.


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