Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Abare sidelined, Christodoulou done for the year

The biggest news coming out of Wednesday's practice came from who was not on the field.

Senior safety Larry Abare, who leads the Bulldogs with 30 tackles, had his right arm in a sling. Abare suffered two broken bones in his right arm. Although no surgery will be needed, Abare said "I am going to keep looking at the x-rays but it probably looks not good for the season right now. I am still hoping I will be able to make the Harvard game."

It goes without saying that this is a huge loss for the Yale defense. Juniors John Pagliaro and Marcus Wallace will likely both see plenty of time filling in for Abare.

Junior receiver Gio Christodoulou spoke with his parents Tuesday night and decided to sit out the rest of the season so he could recapture his junior season and have two seasons of eligibility remaining.

Christodoulou suffered a turf toe injury similar to the one that hampered Green Bay Packers' star Charles Woodson a couple years back and he was not going to be 100 percent so he made the decision to shut it down for the season. Christodoulou, while obviously disappointed to see his season end prematurely, admitted it's been easy to deal with emotionally because of the development of freshman Chris Smith gives the Bulldogs a big-play threat on special teams and at receiver even if he isn't the one providing the game-breaking plays. If Yale was struggling to make plays in the passing, kickoff and punt return games, Christodoulou would be taking his absence much harder than he is at the current time.

"He's the future of Yale football," Christodoulou said of Smith. "I think he is going to be a great football player, he already is, and I try to help him out. Since I got most of the reps during spring and fall practice, I help him out with what I learned."

Right on cue, Smith had an impressive diving catch of a deep ball thrown by Patrick Witt for about a 40-yard gain during the scrimmage portion of Wednesday's practice.

There will be a story on Abare and Christodoulou in Thursday's Register and look for a piece in Saturday's paper about how the Bulldogs go about trying to fill the rather sizeable void left by Abare's absence.

The good news on the injury from is that offensive linemen Jake Koury, Alex Golubiewski and Nate Blair are all back at practice. I expect Koury and Golubiewski to be back in the starting lineup. At practice, there were a number of combinations seeing time with the first team offense. Cory Palmer, Golubiewski, Koury, Nathan Burow, Blair, Mike McInerney and Gabe Fernandez all took snaps with the starters.

Senior linebacker and captain Paul Rice did not practice to reach an aching knee but Rice said he will be good to go on Saturday when Yale plays at Penn.

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