Rhodes will have surgery

Dawgman.com spoke with Sandi Rhodes, Nathan Rhodes' Grandmother, about Nathan's back condition. She gave us the news that Nathan will have surgery and the timeline involved will most likely keep him from his goal of coming back in January. But there's plenty of hope in the Rhodes' camp that Nathan will be able to make a full recovery and fulfill his dream of playing D1 football.

"We just found out yesterday that he's going to need surgery for sure," Sandi said this afternoon. "The doctors said it was a progressive thing, so surgery's needed. But the prognosis for recovery is very good and they aren't closing any doors on anything right now. It'll be done in Los Angeles and the doctor doing the surgery also has a lot of experience with athletes, and he's considered one of the best, so that's always good to hear."

The surgery hasn't been scheduled yet, but Sandi expects it to be in January, thus moving back Nathan's expected return to Washington until spring quarter. "I know he was hoping to go back in January, but now it's looking like spring," she said. "But really, this is kind of a free year for Nathan. He's doing what they call greyshirting. So it really doesn't matter when he gets back up there."

Personally, Nathan's Grandmother doesn't want her Grandson to give up on his ambitions. "I don't want him to play if he can't get his strength back," Sandi said. "But I don't want him to give up trying. But he may not be able to build his strength back up, no matter how hard he tries or wants it. He needs to make sure his body cooperates."

No matter what happens to Nathan in his battle to return to Montlake, one thing is for sure - he will return. "When we went to pick Nathan up this fall, we had a meeting with Coach (Rick) Neuheisel in his office," Sandi said. "He told Nathan, 'No matter what happens, you'll graduate a Husky. And even if it means you're a trainer or a student coach, I'm going to make sure I get my money's worth out of you.'"

Sandi expects Nathan to be in the hospital for a few days after surgery, followed by 6-8 weeks of rest and recooperation. We wish Nathan all the best for a speedy recovery.

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