SEATTLE - The one time cornerback Desmond Trufant looked up too late, the football was by him - and in the waiting arms of receiver Jermaine Kearse for a big gain.
Sure, it was only the first day of the University of Washington’s fall camp – without pads – but the battle had been lost, and Trufant was feeling blue about it.
“That kind of ruined my day,” said the sophomore from Wilson High School, and UW’s No. 1 cover man. “Getting beat stays with you more than making a play.”
Told Trufant took the result hard, Kearse shook it off. “He got me a couple times today,” Kearse said.
The fact Trufant was back running around, jumping and batting down passes and creating havoc was the sign all the coaches wanted to see.
His first day of fall camp surely beat one of the early days of the offseason when Trufant came up limping with pain in his groin area – severe enough he could barely jog.
“Every day, it was getting worse and worse,” he said.
Turns out, he was suffering from one of the prevalent injuries of the Huskies’ offseason: a sports hernia.
“Any time a groin injury creeps in, that is one of the things in your mind (it’s a sports hernia),” UW coach Steve Sarkisian said. “A lot of the times, when you first diagnose it, that’s not what it is, that is what it becomes. I’m always fearful of that.”
Trufant had it. So did cornerback Vonzell McDowell, and receiver Devin Aguilar.
“A lot of the times, once they get fixed, they’re much more healthy, more explosive and they’re faster players when they get back,” Sarkisian said.
Trufant had surgery Feb. 17. A tear was discovered in his abdominal wall – enough that “they sewed it up with mesh material,” the cornerback said.
“At first, it was the worst pain of my life, I can’t lie,” Trufant said.
Trufant missed all contact drills during spring ball, instead running on the sideline. He worked on core-building exercises, running around with weights around his ankles and doing sit-ups as part of his rehabilitation.
“It was a hard process,” Trufant said, “but it paid off in the end.”
Cornerbacks Quinton Richardson (back spasms) and McDowell (turf toe) came up injured midway through practice, and were unable to finish. … True freshman Nick Montana, who went through spring ball, was allowed to speak to the media for the first time. The son of NFL Hall of Fame QB Joe Montana said he’s studying Jake Locker’s every move. “He’s a great leader. I’m trying to pick up some of the characteristics that he has at pretty much everything,” Montana said. “He’s a good athlete, and he knows how to play the position, so it’s a good spot for me right now. … Speaking of Locker, he looked sharp in his first outing, completing 7-of-8 passes in drills. … An estimated 200 spectators came out for the first day of camp.