Injury nagging Shorecrest grad, Huskies tackle

  • JOHN SLEEPER / Herald Writer
  • Wednesday, September 27, 2000 9:00pm
  • Sports

By JOHN SLEEPER

Herald Writer

SEATTLE – Rock Nelson hesitated slightly when asked how his back felt.

“Pretty good, man,” said the Washington Huskies’ 290-pound junior tackle. “Hey, I’m playing.”

For a time, the prospects of Nelson playing at all weren’t good. A herniated disk kept him out of the majority of fall camp, and he didn’t play at all in the Huskies’ first two games, against Idaho and Miami.

In fact, UW coach Rick Neuheisel questioned whether Nelson would play again.

So it was a surprise to many observers to watch Nelson in on about 30 snaps against Colorado. And now, it appears that Nelson, a Shorecrest High School grad, will play extensively Saturday against Oregon.

The bye week couldn’t have come at a better time for Nelson. After the Huskies beat Colorado, he was able to take a few practices off to rest and heal. The soreness wasn’t limited to his back. His body was screaming from the pounding he hadn’t felt since the early days of fall camp.

“It was fortunate that we had a week off to let him rest,” Neuheisel said. “He was just plain football sore. But he’s played himself into good shape and he’ll be available for considerable action on Saturday.”

It’s a remarkable comeback for Nelson. The only time his back would hurt was when he moved. Or when he breathed. Or when he slept. Or when he sat. Or when he stood.

“There was a point when I wasn’t sure when I’d come back,” he said. “I don’t know. It’s kind of a mysterious thing. Sometimes it feels good, sometimes it feels terrible. Lately, it’s been better. It hasn’t been great, but better. It’s almost back.”

  • Hooks update: Wideout Wilbur Hooks is all but out of Saturday’s game with an irregular heartbeat. Although doctors have found nothing abnormal in the structure and dynamics of his heart, Hooks is seeing specialists this week to determine the nature of the irregularity.

    Hooks has not practiced this week. But if specialists give him the green light, Hooks may play.

    “It’s really out of our control as coaches,” Neuheisel said. “It’s really up to the doctors, their feeling comfortable about him being able to participate. The last thing in the world you want to have happen is have anything go wrong with somebody’s heart.”

    Other than Hooks, the Huskies appear to be at near-full strength. Linebacker Ben Mahdavi (ankle), reserve safety Owen Biddle (ankle) and nose tackle Ossim Hatem (elbow) may be available against Oregon.

  • Noise, noise, noise: The Huskies are piping in crowd noise in a field-level speaker system to simulate the decibel level at Autzen Stadium Saturday. Also, the UW band has been blaring during the last stages of football practice.
    Talk to us

    > Give us your news tips.

    > Send us a letter to the editor.

    > More Herald contact information.

  • More in Sports

    Jackson players react to beating Kamiak to win the 4A district championship on Friday, May 17, 2024 in Everett, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
    Jackson softball rallies past Kamiak for district title

    Yanina Sherwood dominates in the circle, striking out 10 in the 4-3 come-from-behind victory.

    X
    Prep roundup for Friday, May 17

    Prep roundup for Friday, May 17: (Note for coaches/scorekeepers: To report results… Continue reading

    Everett players celebrate during a Class 3A District 1 softball championship game between Snohomish and Everett at Phil Johnson Fields in Everett, Washington on Thursday, May 16, 2024. Everett won, 10-0. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
    Everett softball upsets Snohomish for district championship

    Freshman Mia Hoekendorf leads the way as the Seagulls defeat the top-seeded Panthers 10-0.

    The members of the Snohomish High School boys golf team (from left to right): Cade Strickland, Tyson Olds, Palmer Mutcheson, Hudson Capelli, Drew Hanson and Jackson Dammann. (Photo courtesy of Mark Myers Photography)
    Senior-led Snohomish takes aim at state boys golf

    Five of the six Panthers who will play at state are seniors who attended elementary school together.

    X
    Prep roundup for Thursday, May 16

    Prep roundup for Thursday, May 16: (Note for coaches/scorekeepers: To report results… Continue reading

    Snohomish's Hannah Wells, right, celebrates during a Class 3A District 1 girls tennis tournament at Snohomish High School in Snohomish, Washington on Wednesday, May 15, 2024. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
    Shorewood girls tennis claims third straight district trophy

    Rylie Gettmann leads the way for the Stormrays, winning her third district singles championship.

    Everett Community College’s women’s soccer team won the 2014 Northwest Athletic Conference championship. (Photo courtesy of Everett Community College)
    EvCC announces its 2024 Hall of Fame induction class

    Men’s gymnastics, 2014 women’s soccer team headline this year’s class.

    Everett AquaSox pitcher Tyler Cleveland is presented with his 2023 Rawlings Gold Glove Award prior to Everett’s game against the Eugene Emeralds on Wednesday at Funko Field. (Photo courtesy of the Everett AquaSox)
    AquaSox pitcher Tyler Cleveland presented with Gold Glove

    Cleveland was honored for his defensive prowess with Modesto during the 2023 season.

    Four prime-time games highlight Seahawks’ 2024 schedule

    Seattle opens against Denver and doesn’t play its first NFC West opponent until week 6.

    X
    Prep roundup for Wednesday, May 15

    Prep roundup for Wednesday, May 15: (Note for coaches/scorekeepers: To report results… Continue reading

    Snohomish sophomore Abby Edwards pitches during a Class 3A District 1 semifinal game against Monroe on Tuesday at Phil Johnson Ballfields in Everett. Edwards pitched seven innings with 10 strikeouts as the top-seeded Panthers won 5-4. (Taras McCurdie / The Herald)
    Snohomish softball rallies to return to district title game

    Camryn Sage’s walk-off single lifts the Panthers to a 5-4 victory over Monroe.

    Stanwood’s TJ McQuery works with a man on first during a playoff loss to Kentlake on Tuesday, May 14, 2024, at Kent Meridian High School in Kent, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
    Stanwood baseball’s bats go quiet in state loss to Kentlake

    The Spartans manage just three hits as their season ends with a 5-0 loss to the Falcons.

    Support local journalism

    If you value local news, make a gift now to support the trusted journalism you get in The Daily Herald. Donations processed in this system are not tax deductible.