Oct. 3, 1997
Cal Tight End Corey Smith Out with Knee Injury
Head coach Tom Holmoe announced today that freshman tight end Corey Smith has injured a knee in practice and after a day of evaluation the prognosis is that he will miss the next four to six weeks. The good news is that the knee injury is a sprain and no surgery is required. He was injured at the tail end of Tuesday's practice and was evaluated over the next 48 hours to determine that no surgery was required.
Smith was one of Cal's most highly touted freshmen entering the '97 season and was considered by many a strong contender for starting duties. He missed most of fall camp after injuring an ankle in the first day of padded drills in Turlock, but was just beginning to have an impact and make a strong push for increased playing time.
Because he has played in the first three games of the season, he is eligible to petition for a medical redshirt year. Those are routinely granted for medical reasons and he should return in 1998 with four full years of elibility.
"Corey was just beginning to show his abilities," said Holmoe. "For the long term, this may be a real blessing in disguise since he should really benefit from a year learning the system." Holmoe indicated that the three players currently sharing the position -- redshirt-freshmen Brian Surgener and Reed Diehl and junior A.J. Kunkle -- all have performed better than expectations and that the tighe end position seems in excellent position for the future.