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GW's Switzer 'doing a lot better' after injuries

George Washington running back Ryan Switzer said he's "doing a lot better'' after sustaining a concussion and a shoulder injury in Friday's season-opening win at South Charleston.

Switzer, last year's Kennedy Award winner as the state's top player, suffered the injuries about midway into the first quarter when he fell hard along the GW sideline chasing an incomplete pass. He was later taken to the hospital for X-rays.

"I'm doing a little bit better today,'' Switzer said Saturday afternoon. "My head is doing a lot better. It's going to be day to day.

"I hope to be cleared in terms of the concussion to play next week, and I'll go have my shoulder evaluated on Monday. It's a little stiff, but I think it'll loosen up in the coming days.''

Switzer admitted that he blacked out when he hit the ground after being pushed by SC defender Trevond Reese.

"I really don't remember the hit,'' Switzer said. "I went down to the [GW fieldhouse] today and watched the game for the first time. I don't have any memory of it from last night. I saw it and it looked like I couldn't control myself coming down because of the speed I was running. He pushed me and after I landed, everything went black. The next thing I know, I'm waking up in my bed.''

Switzer actually played one more snap after that third-down incompletion. He went back out with his right arm obviously hanging and punted the ball away. Later, he could be seen walking the sideline, windmilling his right arm and shrugging his right shoulder. Soon after, he was taken to the hospital.

"That ground hit me pretty hard,'' Switzer said with a chuckle. "It was hard. On my first run, it looked like a fast surface, because I was moving.''

Switzer's first carry of the game went 63 yards for a touchdown. He had one more carry for 6 yards on the next series before the injury.

"I passed a concussion test [Friday] night,'' Switzer said. "They kept me out because I couldn't remember. I didn't know where I was. It was kind of scary for me because I've never had something like that happen.''

Switzer said he had a dislocated AC joint in his left shoulder over the summer, but no previous problems with the right shoulder.

"It felt like that [other shoulder injury],'' Switzer said, "but they said it's not separated. The doctor said I have a couple ligaments sprained, like in an ankle. With icing and therapy, I should be back [soon]. It's loosening up, actually.''

Switzer was pleased with what he saw from the Patriots after his departure, as they came from behind three different times to earn a 36-24 victory.

"I'm really proud of the guys,'' he said. "They won without me. It shows a lot about their character and maturity. Our guys stepped up and [fullback Dustin Crouser] had a great game, he and Jacob Jackson. Hopefully, it gives us some confidence moving forward.''

Switzer plans to work with GW trainer Corey Rueckert in an attempt to get back in the lineup. The Patriots host Paul Blazer of Ashland (Ohio) on Friday.

"I'll probably be out Monday and Tuesday for sure,'' Switzer said. "We'll see how the shoulder feels because I think I'm cleared for practice for just the concussion. But the main thing is I don't want to rush anything if I'm not ready.''

GW coach Steve Edwards Jr. realizes his team could be without Switzer for a stretch, but doesn't think he'll insert a lot of new schemes or plays to make up for his absence.

"It could happen,'' Edwards said of Switzer missing playing time. "It's a possibility. What it'll do, it's going to give us time for everybody to prepare. It'll give us a chance to work on personnel and shore up some glaring problems we had Friday. I don't know how much, if anything, new we're going to do.

"It's all in the doctors' hands now. We'll do whatever is best for [Switzer] and his family, and go with it.''

Reach Rick Ryan at 304-348-5175 or rickryan@wvgazette.com.

 


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