ATHENS — Georgia coach Kirby Smart, playing in a charity golf tournament in Eatonton on Wednesday, weighed in on the recent non-football injury to tailback Sony Michel and his philosophy as far as monitoring his players’ off-field activities.
“Tough injury,” Smart told reporters on Wednesday at the Arians Family Foundation golf tournament. “Tough for a kid who worked so hard to be in the best shape of his life, but it’s part of the game. It’s part of things that happen. Kids (make) mistakes and things happen. It’s very unfortunate for him, but he’s in good spirits now. He realizes that he’s going to be healthy, he’ll be 100 percent again and we’re excited about it.”
Smart said he and Georgia’s coaches continually advise players to be careful about what kind of physical and recreation activities they engage in away from the football field and training complex. But, in the end, the players have the right to enjoy their lives, too, especially with all the hard work they put in most of the year.
“I think you always want kids to be careful, but kids are going to be kids,” Smart said. “I was a player once. I went and did things. I went and rode on jet skis and rode on things. Accidents are going to happen. You hate it. It’s unfortunate, but we’ve moved past it now. We know he’s going to be 100 percent.”
Smart has experience with running backs and broken forearms. Just last year at Alabama, running back Kenyan Drake suffered a broken forearm in a game against Mississippi State. Drake returned to play in the SEC Championship Game three weeks later. But Smart wasn’t interested in speculating Wednesday.
“To be honest, I’m not even thinking about it,” Smart said of Michel’s possible return date. “I’m thinking about this event. I’m thinking about the Arians’ event, what this is for, these kids, the great cause. I really don’t want it to be a distraction.”
— Fletcher Page (@FletcherPage) July 6, 2016