Concerning swing sets and hip surgery ...

semerson@macon.comNovember 7, 2012 

ATHENS - Mark Richt doesn't like to go in-depth about injuries ... unless he's talking about himself.

The Georgia head coach has been told he needs hip surgery, and he's leaning towards getting it during the early portion of next year. And why does he need it? Well that's where it gets interesting.

It goes back three decades, according to Richt, or at least that's his theory. When he was in his 20s, he had an accident on a swing set that he first wrote off as a funny story, but now thinks caused a longer-term injury

Richt ended up spending about five minutes after Wednesday's practice explaining the swing set incident, stopping at a whiteboard to diagram the swing set. It wasn't entirely clear why this was necessary, but media members happily snapped photos or filmed.

Anyway, the swing set injury is only what Richt thinks is the genesis of the injury. He knows he aggravated it going through a P90X workout, the same one made notable by Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan.

"Don't laugh if you haven't tried it. Because it's tough," Richt said. "But I felt like I had pulled a hip flexor muscle and it wasn't going away. I could wait until it feels good again or I could keep going to stay in condition and all that, so I kept kind of sucking it up, and kept exercising. The pain got a little worse."

The soreness ended up focusing on his hip. It also got in the way of his regular racquetball games. Finally the doctors told him he needed hip replacement if he wanted to be able to continue exercising.

Richt said he hasn't decided for sure to have the surgery.

"I haven't decided yet. But if I do it, there's different windows of time," Richt said. "The earliest possible time would be after signing date."

If he did it then, he'd have to have ample recovery time before spring practice. If he waited until after then, he would have to recover in time for Bulldog club meetings. And he wouldn't really want to wait until after that and lose much of his summer.

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