We’re now nine games into Kentucky’s football season and one of the biggest consistencies so far has been the poor play of the offensive unit and the debate surrounding the quarterback position. A few fans have already been looking toward a pair of incoming freshman quarterbacks to make an impact next year – something that’s very difficult to do – in order for the offense to make a significant jump.
However, some sobering news came this week when it was reported that one of the gems of the 2009 class, Texas QB Ryan Mossakowski, had suffered a season-ending shoulder injury. At the time of his injury, Mossakowski had thrown for 15 touchdowns and over 1300 yards in five games and had clinched a playoff berth for the first time in his school’s history – one of his goals outlined in our interview with him earlier in the year.
I got in touch with Ryan Wednesday night to check in on his injury and he explained that he had actually suffered a torn labrum a few weeks ago, but hoped to work through it and continue to help his team.
“When I got injured, we saw the doctor and it seemed like I just needed to rest it and let it heal. But after another week and a half, I was having a hard time throwing the ball without pain. So, we had an MRI done and the MRI showed that I had a torn labrum, but we wanted a second opinion. So we saw another specialist and he confirmed that it was my labrum.”
At that point, Mossakowski was presented with the option of going through rehab and finishing out Centennial’s season, putting off surgery until the end of the year and forcing him to redshirt his first year at UK, or having the surgery now and ending his high school career in both football and baseball. For Mossakowski, the decision wasn’t hard. Everything he’s doing at Centennial is done with a final Bluegrass destination in mind.
“We made the playoffs for the first time in school history and I really wanted to play, but after talking with my mom, dad and the second doctor who is a well known shoulder specialist,” Mossakowski said, “we decided to have it repaired now so that I could get ready for football next year. That means that I am going to miss baseball this spring. I have surgery scheduled for next Wednesday and rehab to start right after that.
But, for any athlete, having your high school career cut short so suddenly can be disheartening. For Mossakowski, though, keeping the focus on what is upcoming is what is important.
“I am really excited about coming to UK and being a Wildcat. I know that the program is doing great things and I want to be apart of it and help make it even better” Mossakowski said, “I will be fine and ready to play football next year. I have a very strong faith and sometimes things just happen. I am going to stay positive and work hard to get ready to make a difference at UK.”
That same sentiment is shared by the UK coaches, who fully endorsed Mossakowski’s decision to miss baseball and have surgery now, and both parties believe that he won’t miss a beat when it comes to being ready for SEC football.
“My dad and I have talked with the coaches at UK and based on our conversation, everything is fine and they also want me to get ready for next year. I have done a lot of reading on other athletes that have had the same type injury and they have come back, some have said even stronger. That is my goal.
“I can promise you this, I am going to work hard to get ready for football next year. In the four years that I have played varsity sports in high school I have never been injured like this and based on the opportunity that I have at UK, I wanted to focus my attention on getting ready.”
So, fear not, Kentucky fans. The 13th-ranked quarterback in the country remains as committed as ever to the Cats and it seems as if his injury has only made him more hungry for a successful career in Lexington.
That certainly can’t be a bad thing.