Thursday, March 01, 2007

This Post May Disappear

(Credit: Columbia University Athletics)

I am starting to find credibility in the tips I'm getting about Lion QB Craig Hormann possibly tearing his ACL last week. Further, it's also being said that he had surgery today and could/should be recovered in time for training camp in late August.

Where to begin? Well, I want to make it clear that this post and all traces of it will be erased if it turns out this is not true. If this were an actual newspaper or commercial website, I would still not publish these rumors... but since no one could possibly think I mean Mr. Hormann any harm, I'm going to discuss this report for now.

First let's talk medicine. Here's a quick look
at what a torn ACL is and a little about treatment/recovery.

M.A. Olawale (Credit: Columbia University Athletics)

If this is a true story, it's a scary one because we all know how depth is not one of Columbia's strong suits. Rising sophomore QB M.A. Olawale has a lot of talent and speed, but his abilities as a passer are far from 100% established. If Hormann is healthy next season, Olawale may be much more valuable at another position.

The other option is transfer QB Shane Kelly, a rising sophomore from Temple. Kelly is a completely unknown quantity at this point, (in fact he may not be 100% enrolled or pre-enrolled at Columbia yet). It would be impossible to handicap the Lions upcoming season very well if he were thrust into the starting spot.

On the bright side, Hormann was not a running threat and even a somewhat gimpy ACL may not be all that noticeable for a guy whose best talents are in his arms and his ability to avoid throwing interceptions . On the other hand, an injury like this has to affect the way a guy throws the ball at least indirectly. So hopefully, the recovery will be quick and complete.

On the dark side, Hormann was just beginning to show his true potential under offensive coordinator Vinny Marino's admittedly complex system. I shudder to think how long it might take Olawale or Kelly or anyone else to get to the point where Hormann is mentally with this offensive scheme. If Hormann can't play, CU's scoring problems from last year may multiply in 2007.

It wouldn't be football without a little adversity. And it wouldn't be Columbia football without a lot of adversity. For those of you new to this blog... welcome to Columbia football!


At Thu Mar 01, 03:33:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How about calling The Firing Lion tonight (Wed.) 9:00-10:00 and asking if the panel knows anything about Hormann.
212.854.WKCR. Bad timing for me in CA.

At Thu Mar 01, 04:12:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes it is true that Horman was scheduled for surgery this week. Let's all hope that he recuperates and is back for training camp in August. Best of luck, Craig!

At Thu Mar 01, 04:56:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rehab from an ACL tear and be back in time for training camp? I'll believe it when I see it. Tough break for the kid, I was looking forward to seeing him lead the team this season.

At Thu Mar 01, 06:32:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The last time a CU QB had knee surgery was for Steve Hundsberger. Jeff Otis used the injury as an opportunity to claim the job . Perhaps this will give the back up QB Olawale enough reps to get his confidence up.

At Thu Mar 01, 10:04:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Craig's surgery was this morning. He's staying on East Campus with his mother.

At Thu Mar 01, 08:34:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

MA can get the job done. There was also another freshman on the roster who was a QB from a prep school in the Ohio W.Va area who is a terrific athlete. As for Shane Kelly, let;s hope he is the real deal. Any talk of CH taking a semester off and coming back in '08?

At Fri Mar 02, 01:55:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The reason that the doctors are expecting a rehab period of 4-6 months, rather than 6+ is that when a person is as strong and fit physically as Craig is, the body is often able to heal itself faster.

At Fri Mar 02, 02:01:00 AM GMT+7, Blogger Jake said...

Interesting point! Thanks so much.

At Sat Mar 03, 06:29:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gross Chooses Ivy League 'Total Package'

When national signing day rolls around, many athletes look for a program that will fit their personal athletic needs. Others seek a college that provides a strong academic program to support their educational needs. For Fairmont High School senior Alex Gross, it was all about both.
As the unquestioned leader of the Firebirds on the football field last season and a tremendous student in the classroom, Gross turned away a number of offers from the likes of Wofford College in South Carolina, Davidson College in North Carolina and several Ohio colleges. Gross even made the difficult decision to walk away from interest shown from Northwestern University, a Big 10 school known as much for its academics as its athletics.
Instead, Gross made one of his official visits to the Ivy League’s Columbia University, and came back with his future in hand.
“It was one of those things where I went there for a weekend visit, came back on Monday, and by Tuesday wanted to go back,” said Gross. “Everything at Columbia just felt right. The coaching staff, the players, the access to New York City and all of the opportunities educationally just can’t be beat. It was the total package academically, socially and football wise.”
As Gross signed his National Letter of Intent to play for the Lions, the Firebird senior looked back on his career at Fairmont.
“I wouldn’t trade my experiences here at Fairmont for any other high school program in the country,” said Gross.
“The leadership role Coach Blevins and Coach Dement put me in has really helped me grow on and off the football field. I feel really well prepared to take on the challenges of college football and life in New York City.”
For Fairmont head coach Brian Blevins, having Gross as his leader paid dividends both on and off the field.
“His leadership for this team was probably more important off the field than on it,” said Blevins. “He has laid the foundation for the guys behind him to continue this legacy, and I know that is very important to him.”
That legacy now includes winning for the Firebirds. After playing a big role in Fairmont’s 7-3 record his sophomore season, Gross grabbed the reigns and turned the team around after a disappointing junior campaign.
“After going 3-7 two years ago, Alex was not only our team captain, but our leader in every aspect of the word,” added Blevins. “He made the commitment to turn things around and basically put us on his back last year.”
With his high school football career behind him, Gross can now look forward to the next level. Aside from making contributions defensively for the Lions, Gross will seek a degree in finance and brokerage, without closing all his doors in the process.
“I think I want to keep my pre-med requirements just in case,” added Gross, with a quick glimpse to his parents, Doctors Mary Ellen Leary and Howard Gross. “I’m going to go into it with an open mind.
“No matter what you do at Columbia, it will open doors for you. Just like here at Fairmont, I know I’ll leave there well prepared.”

At Sat Mar 03, 07:26:00 AM GMT+7, Blogger Jake said...

Thanks so much for posting that article about Alex Gross. We will be keeping an eye on him.

At Sat Mar 03, 07:57:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sure thing. I am a fan/parent of one of Alex's teammates. He is a great kid and a great player. 2 time all league, and all southwest ohio. 1300+ yds. rushing and over 100 tackles on D this season. Best of luck to Alex and the Lions

At Tue Mar 06, 02:30:00 AM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

His ACL surgery went very well. He did not have any other issues with the knee. Cartilage, tendons, and ligaments looked in good shape. His hamstring tissue that was used was in Excellant Condition and all of this will lead to quicker recovery. He has started rehab and is very focused on what needs to get done. He will be back in August.

Go Lions

At Tue Mar 06, 02:36:00 AM GMT+7, Blogger Jake said...

That is great, great news. We really need him back. One thing I've been forgetting to mention here is that while Hormann is not a good running QB, he does do a good job of rolling out and avoiding the sack. He was sacked very few times last season considering the strength of the o-line. So, we hope his ability to move around in the pocket will not be lost.

At Mon May 21, 11:20:00 PM GMT+7, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good luck to CH and Go Lions!


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