By REED NELSON
John Boyett has racked up 276 tackles in his 39 career games in assorted Ducks uniforms, a figure that appears to be set in statistcal stone via season-ending surgery.
According to the Boyett’s hometown newspaper, the Napa Valley Register, the pre-season All-America safety traveled to his home in Napa, Calif. Sunday and will undergo surgery on both knees later this week to repair partially torn patellar tendons.
Boyett, a senior, didn’t dress for Saturday’s 42-25 win over Fresno State, but was on the sidelines showing support for the Ducks.
In addition to his 276 career tackles — he’s led Oregon in tackles two of the last three seasons and his 108 tackles last season were good enough to rank him fourth in the Pac-12 last year — Boyett has picked off nine passes as a Duck, including his second quarter interception two weeks ago against Arkansas State.
Boyett, who hasn’t discussed how the injury happened, read a prepared statement to the Valley Register on Sunday:
“I’ve had a lingering injury that I played through all last year. The hope was, through different treatments and certain types of rehab during this past offseason, they would heal up and I’d be ready to go for my senior year. But unfortunately, it didn’t work out as planned. I’ve been dealing with a tremendous amount of pain for a long time. At this time, I’m not able to play up to this level that I want to. Five different specialists from around the country have reviewed my MRIs and at this time surgery is needed. The operation is scheduled for Wednesday and the rehab process to get back to 100 percent is approximately six months. It’s a very difficult decision. I have tremendous teammates and made many friends at the university. I’ve grown tremendously as a player and as a person, working under my great defensive back coach, Coach John Neal and the defensive coordinator, Nick Aliotti, who recruited me to the University of Oregon.”
The injury will be a big blow for the Oregon secondary, which is a thin unit that has already had its depth exposed by lesser opponents in the first two weeks of 2012.
The Valley Register also reported that the injury was a lingering one, and one that had been bothering him for the better part of two seasons.
Boyett told the Valley Register that he “hasn’t thought about the future,” so there is no word on whether he’ll request a medical redshirt application from the NCAA — which he should be allowed, if he applies, given that he’s played a little less than two quarters of football in 2012 — or if he’ll forgo the opportunity and try his hand in April’s NFL Draft.
If he opts for the draft his surgery will force him to miss the combine, but he should be healthy enough for a Pro Day workout.
Oregon plays Tennessee Tech at home on Saturday, their last tune up before Rich Rodriguez and company come to town to kick off Pac-12 play.
Categories: News & Notes