(Updated 8 p.m.)
ATHENS – After entering the season “as healthy as we’ve been in a long time” — coach Mark Richt’s assessment early this month — Georgia’s football team has seen its injury list grow lengthy in a hurry.
Several key players remain questionable for Saturday’s game at Mississippi State: cornerback-punt returner Branden Smith (concussion), fullback Shaun Chapas (ankle) and offensive guard Chris Davis (knee and hip).
The news is better for Georgia on another key player, tailback Caleb King, who is expected to play Saturday after missing the past 2 ½ games with a sprained right ankle.
“I know 100 percent I’m playing in this game,” King said after practice Tuesday night.
King acknowledged that he thought he would play last week, too. This time, though, running backs coach Bryan McClendon agrees with him.
“He’s definitely going to play,” McClendon said.
Smith, who suffered a concussion in practice early last week, is “getting better,” Richt said, but has not been cleared to resume practice. As with all players who suffer concussions, Smith must pass medical tests before returning to the field.
“We think before the week is over he will have a chance” to practice, said Richt, who added: “Believe me, we will not rush a guy [after a concussion]. There is no way. We’ll be real careful with him.”
Richt and offensive coordinator Mike Bobo expressed hope that Davis and Chapas will be able to play Saturday. However, Davis was riding a stationary bike during Tuesday’s practice, and Chapas was on the field in a green non-contact jersey.
Other injury news: