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CFB Injuries

North Carolina football battling a host of injuries

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Photographer: Brian Utesch/Icon Sportswire

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill will head down to Atlanta this weekend to face off against ACC foe, Georgia Tech. Unlike the matchup last season, this year North Carolina has run into a problem head coach Larry Fedora says has never been so tolling on the program: a domino effect of injuries.

In week two, the Tar Heels took a major hit losing senior middle linebacker Andre Smith to an undisclosed injury. Beyond Smith’s strength and experience as a linebacker, he has left a hole as a vocal leader on the field that the defense cannot seem to fill with sophomore replacement, Jonathan Smith.

However, the injuries keep coming for the Tar Heels.

Just in last weekend’s battle against the Duke Blue Devils alone, the Tar Heels lost four more players to injury. This includes leading receiver and senior Austin Proehl, who left the game Saturday with a broken collarbone. With a broken collarbone, surgery is only seldom required, but without, means an eight to ten week recovery. The Carolina program, however, has ruled out Proehl for the remainder of the season. With fellow top receiver Thomas Jackson sidelined for the season as well, the Tar Heels pass game will without a doubt suffer as they continue deeper into conference play. With the plethora of injuries in mind, it will be key for North Carolina to play smart and keep running backs Michael Carter and Jordon Brown fresh and healthy in order for them to be efficient for the entirety of the season.

Proehl, Smith and Jackson are among ten other athletes that have been ruled out for the 2017 season. Fedora and his staff keep their athletes’ injuries hushed until diagnoses are confirmed, but the program has released an updated status list for week five:

Out for the Season:
Antwuan Branch, TB
Jesse Cuccia, S
Luke Elder, OL
D.J. Ford, S
Rontavius Groves, WR
Thomas Jackson, WR
Tyler Powell, DL
Austin Proehl, WR
Jacob Schmidt, TB
Andre Smith, LB
William Sweet, OT
Carl Tucker, TE
Noah Turner, TE

Out:
Corey Bell Jr., CB
Tommy Hatton, OL
Tyler Pritchett, OL
Stanton Truitt, TB

Doubtful:
Jalen Dalton, DT

Questionable:
Dazz Newsome, WR

Lindsey Sparrow is a 2017 graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she studied journalism and exercise and sport science. While Lindsey now works in the world of professional sports in New York City, her heart is stuck in the middle of college sports. She'll be tracking college injuries across the country for Fantasy Doctors.

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CFB Injuries

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Sophomore QB Shane Buechele Joins The Hipsters

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© Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports

Sophomore QB Shane Buechele Joins The Hipsters

Austin, TX is known for being weird, zany and full of hipsters. On Thursday of this week, Sophomore Quarterback for the Texas Longhorns, Shane Buechele joined those hipsters, but in a very different way. Buechele had surgery to repair a torn abductor muscle.

The abductor muscles help in moving the leg sideways, away from the midline of the body. These muscles include the piriformis, superior gemellus, inferior gemellus, tensor fasciae latae, sartorius, gluteus medius, and gluteus minimus muscles. They attach to the lateral part of the hip.

The Injury

Buechele injured the hip in the Longhorns 33-16 win over the Missouri Tigers during the Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl in late December. The rising junior didn’t return in the second half of the game and ended up 6-of-14 throwing for 55 yards and a touchdown. Buechele also ran the ball three times for 10 yards against the Tigers. He came up limp in the first half with the groin/hip injury.

Buechele had surgery Thursday. He’s expected to be ready for the start of spring practice on Monday, March 5. This surgery complicates the Longhorns Quarterback situation because true freshman Sam Ehlinger came in the game to replace Buechele and played well. Buechele also had quite the list of  injuries dating back to a shoulder injury he suffered in the team’s season-opening loss to Maryland which cost him two games. He also suffered an ankle injury in the team’s Sept. 28 road win over Iowa State which ended up limiting him for the next three games. Depending on how Buechele’s rehabilitation goes operation, it could make for an interesting battle for the starting quarterback position.

Return to Play

Buechele’s rehabilitation will require some early weight bearing and weight shifting activities, followed by some gentle strengthening, and gait (or walking) training. Once he has mastered all of those, he will move on to heavy weights and resistance training as well as plyometrics (jumping and landing). If everything stays on track, Shane Buechele should be back on the football field in 4-6 weeks.

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