Lynchburg, Va. — Liberty coach Hugh Freeze says his back feels better, but it’s not yet clear if he will be able to travel to this weekend’s game at Louisiana.
“I’m going to let the doctors kind of guide me knowing that going to an away game, I’m going to have to be able to sit up — at least, that’s the best case — for four-plus hours probably to call a game,” the 49-year-old Freeze said at his weekly news briefing.
The Flames leave for Lafayette, Louisiana, on Friday afternoon for the Saturday game.
“I think the next few days are going to be critical in deciding that,” he said.
Freeze had back surgery on Aug. 16 and has also battled a staph infection doctors discovered during the procedure. He has participated in practices since then by video hook-ups to a hotel room near campus where he has been staying. He has not been allowed to climb the steps at his family’s town house in Lynchburg. Technology also allows his to communicate with coaches and, in some instances, players from his hotel room.
When Liberty opened the season against No. 21 Syracuse on Saturday night at home, Freeze entered the stadium in a wheelchair and watched the game from a hospital bed set up in one of the coaches’ boxes.
The bed was used to support his back. He addressed the team before the game, at halftime and after the game by video. He also had a postgame media session using the same technology.
Freeze, in his first season at Liberty, said he called most first- and second-down plays against the Orange and consulted with his defensive coaches on some key third-down calls. But he found it difficult to see the game clock at times. The Flames lost 24-0.
Sitting in a chair is still not very comfortable, he said Monday.
Freeze had an MRI last week when he experienced new discomfort. He said doctors found an “extreme amount of fluid that had gathered on the nerves where they did the operation.” He added that he’s not experiencing the same problem now.
On Sunday night, he said he turned over in bed both ways while sleeping without problems.
Waiting for doctors to clear him for normal activities has tested his patience.
“The most frustrating thing for me right now is I haven’t been on the practice field with these kids in 15, 16 days, and I think it shows,” he said. “… I just am ready to be back on the practice field. So this week my goal is to do whatever the doctors say so that I can be back on the practice field. Whatever that means come Thursday or Friday with Lafayette, that is what it is. I’ve got a great staff; they obviously have handled it very well.”
A Louisville dance team member will have to visit a specialist to repair a broken nose she sustained when she was hit by an errant pass thrown by Notre Dame’s Ian Book.
Elizabeth Scott was hit in the fourth quarter of the eighth-ranked Irish’s 35-17 victory over the Cardinals on Monday night. Book, under pressure, threw the ball out of bounds and struck Scott as she performed with other dancers near Cardinal Stadium’s south end zone.
Sheryl Knight, the coach of the Ladybirds dance squad, said in a statement that Scott is seeing a specialist because of the break’s complicated nature. Knight added that added that Scott’s pain is “manageable” and she is anxious to return to the sideline.
The dental hygiene major from Floyds Knobs, Indiana, joked on her verified Twitter account about her injury trending on social media. Scott even thanked Book.
A New Mexico spokesman says the team has not yet reached the point of making coaching decisions for the Lobos’ Sept. 14 game against Notre Dame.
Coach Bob Davie, who is 64, had a “serious medical incident” Saturday following New Mexico’s season-opening victory against Sam Houston State.
... Guard Kyler Schott — an unknown walk-on with zero NCAA scholarship offers coming out of his tiny eastern Iowa high school — is set to join the Hawkeyes’ starting lineup. Iowa has been forced to reshuffle the line after losing tackle Alaric Jackson (Detroit Renaissance) to a sprained knee.
... LSU coach Ed Orgeron said projected starting left tackle Saahdiq Charles and pass-rushing linebacker Michael Divinity Jr. will play Saturday when the sixth-ranked Tigers visit No. 9 Texas.
... Kansas linebacker Thomas Patrick Barrett was arrested at a student bar on suspicion of contributing to a child’s misconduct and displaying or possessing a fictitious or fraudulent ID card.
... Coastal Carolina’s football team is relocating due to a hurricane for the second straight year, this time staying and training in South Carolina’s Upstate region to get away from approaching Hurricane Dorian.