I never really thought the whole Sammie-Stroughter-missing-practice deal was that serious until I read Paul Buker's post today on the Oregonian Blog. I thought Sammie would have his issues taken care of in a few days and everything would be fine, but the article now has me worried:
What if Sammie, like Coye Francies, Kyle Loomis, and others, is gone?
That's what I think PB is trying to get across. Buker and Johnson had a little chat after today's practice, and this is what struck me the hardest:
"Right now I'm pretty much focused on just learning the offense as well as I can,'' he said. "I'm hoping we actually get Sammie back, that's a big part of our team. ... he's pretty much the leader of our group.''
Is it strange not having No. 19 around at practice?
"Without a doubt,'' said Johnson. "I mean, everybody misses him around here. We miss his presence, and we hope he gets well soon.''
Johnson laughed when I asked him if he had a favorite in the quarterback derby. Who throws the better ball, the left-hander (Sean Canfield) or the right-hander (Lyle Moevao)?
"I love 'em both,'' said Johnson. "It's pretty exciting to watch both of those guys go out and compete every day. ... the best man will win.''
In the occasion that Johnson is the #1 split end come September, here's a taste of what we can expect:
But still. We need Sammie.