Monday, September 22, 2008

Terrible news for Tar Heels on Yates injury

The spot that the UNC football team could probably least afford an injury was at quarterback. T.J. Yates had brought a calmness and an effectiveness to the position, but behind him on the depth chart -- well, it could make a baby-blue fan cringe.

Now it's time to cringe. Yates is out at least six weeks with a broken ankle. He will likely be replaced by Mike Paulus, who will get thrown to the Hurricanes Saturday when UNC plays at Miami at noon. Here's the full announcement from UNC officials today:

"University of North Carolina sophomore quarterback T.J. Yates sustained an injury to his left ankle during Saturday's game vs. Virginia Tech. Although x-rays taken during the game were negative, an MRI Sunday evening revealed a small non-displaced fracture in his ankle. Yates' injury will not require surgery. He is expected to miss a minimum of six weeks. During that time he will undergo treatment and rehabilitation. His status will be re-evaluated after six weeks."

This is awful news for the Tar Heels in the short term. Paulus, the younger brother of Duke point guard Greg Paulus, looked terrible against Virginia Tech (two interceptions, just three completions). At least he'll have a full week to prepare now.

Long term, who knows? Paulus might be the answer eventually -- he was certainly hailed as such when he signed with the Tar Heels. But for now, this is the sort of injury that can spoil a season. As Panther fans know from last year's QB experimentation after Jake Delhomme's injury, no matter how you spin this news, it ain't good.


jose jimenez said...

Confirmation was expected, nonetheless difficult to swallow for Carolina fans. Injuries are part of the game and suck when they happen to your team. Look at NC State the past two years. It shows why recruiting and building depth are so important to a college program. You have put the next guy in there and give him the best opportunity you can to be successful.

Anonymous said...

Carolina loses one player and the doomsday naysayers come out saying their season is done. NC State has had 10 starters miss time this year and are 2-2. State will probably lose Saturday to South Florida especially with Nate Irving and Russell Wilson both being out. Yet nobody in the Observer Sports Dept gives a rats you know what about it. The people placing Carolina on the pedastal to be in the ACC title game were delusional anyways. Carolina's goal should be to go to a bowl since they haven't been to one in at least 4 seasons. Which is still a very good possibility this season.