So far, Kansas University wide receiver Daymond Patterson’s senior year has not gone according to plan.
Good thing he’ll get another.
Wednesday night, after the team’s second practice of the bye week, KU coach Turner Gill announced that Patterson would take a red shirt this season because of a groin injury he suffered in the season-opening victory against McNeese State.
“We thought it was going to be a little bit better this week, but it looks like it’s going to linger a little bit,” Gill said. “Because he’ll probably miss four or five games, I think it’s just smarter for our football team, and also for him, to make sure he has a solid senior year.”
Because he played in just one half this season, Patterson’s application for a medical red shirt should be a slam dunk. Gill likes the idea of having Patterson back a second time in 2012.
“It’s nothing but good,” Gill said. “He’s a guy with a lot of experience. He’s played a lot of football, and he’s going to help, even this year, as far as being able to teach some of the younger guys. Obviously, we’re going to miss him, but it’s another opportunity for somebody else, and it’s going to make us stronger next season.”
After leading the KU wide receivers in receptions, yards and touchdowns in 2010, Patterson got off to a fast start this year, scoring the team’s first receiving touchdown of the season. Not long after, he injured his groin after being tackled awkwardly and has not been able to return to 100 percent since.
Offensive coordinator Chuck Long said losing Patterson’s veteran presence would be missed. But he said he was confident the senior from Mesquite, Texas, would find a way to impact the team.
“In talking to (wide receivers) coach (David) Beaty, I asked him, ‘How’s he been in the (meeting) room?’ because it’s tough not playing,” Long said. “And he said he’s been really good in the room. And that’s the first silver lining you get out of it.”
T-shirts don’t irk Jayhawks
Early this week, the Georgia Tech athletic department printed T-shirts to commemorate the Yellow Jackets’ record-setting performance in their 66-24 victory against Kansas last week.
Asked Wednesday if they had any reaction to the shirts, the Jayhawks seemed fine with Tech celebrating their school and national records.
“I heard about it,” red-shirt freshman safety Keeston Terry said. “I saw a little link to it. But when you accomplish something like that, you gotta boast about it and be proud about what you did. It’s just unfortunate that we were on the opposite side of a record they set.”
Added red-shirt freshman cornerback Dexter McDonald: “I haven’t seen the shirts, but I overhead something about them. After you lose, anything can be motivation. You’re gonna take it to heart if you care.”
Although he didn’t know if the shirts would serve as extra motivation, Long said he learned a lesson about stuff like that a long time ago.
“This football world is a small world,” Long said. “I had an old mentor tell me one time, ‘You’re gonna run into these people again.’ And, in my coaching career, I have. But those are things that you remember. I’m not for that, but those are things that happen.”
Dorsey to return?
With injuries knocking out quite a few players already this season, the Jayhawks may be turning the corner in that department with regard to senior defensive lineman Patrick Dorsey.
“He has a chance to be available,” Gill said of the lineman who missed the first three games because of an injured foot. “We’ll see how he practices here in the next few days.”
Grimes to be enshrined
In addition to reviewing game film and working to get better, KU offensive line coach J.B. Grimes will spend the bye week being honored by his alma mater.
Saturday, Grimes will return to Arkadelphia, Ark., to be inducted into the Henderson State University Hall of Honor.
“I’m really looking forward to going back,” he said this summer. “It’s such an honor.”
Grimes played guard on the HSU offensive line from 1973-76.
He was a three-time conference champion and earned all-conference honors during the 1976 season. While Grimes was in uniform, the Reddies won 40 games and played for an NAIA national championship, feats for which Grimes takes very little credit.