UK Recruiting

Top UK recruit faces surgery

Kentucky football recruit Ryan Mossakowski will undergo surgery next week to repair a torn labrum in his throwing shoulder.

Mossakowski, a 6-foot-4, 201-pound quarterback from Frisco Centennial (Texas), is one of the jewels of Kentucky's 2009 recruiting class. He's listed as a four-star prospect by Rivals.com and Scout.com, and Rivals ranks him as the nation's No. 9 pro-style quarterback.

Mossakowski originally injured the shoulder during the first half of Centennial's game against McKinney North on Sept. 26.

"He was reaching for a ball that had glanced off his shoulder," said Mossakowski's coach, Todd Howard. "The ball bounced forward, and the defense was coming toward him. He was trying to get the ball and stuck his arm in a pile."

Mossakowski, who also injured his ankle in that game, returned in the second half and led Centennial on a game-winning 70-yard drive. Howard said the injury was initially thought to be a bruise, and Mossakowski sat out Centennial's next game. He returned to the lineup the following week and tried to play through the injury, but Howard and the coaches shut him down three weeks ago.

A recent MRI diagnosed the torn labrum. Mossakowski, who is also a highly touted baseball prospect, will miss the entire baseball season.

Mossakowski is facing extensive rehab following surgery, but doctors have told him that he should be able to resume throwing by the summer and be fully recovered by the time UK begins fall practice.

"It's a tough thing, but you've got to take the good with the bad," Mossakowski said. "I'm glad we found it now instead of later. I'm just ready to get the surgery done, rehab hard-core and hope everything works out. Baseball will always be there, but right now I'm focusing on getting my shoulder right for football. I'll be cutting it close, but I think I'll have enough time to get ready for my freshman year. If my shoulder's not ready, I'll just get redshirted."

New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees underwent surgery to repair a torn labrum in his throwing shoulder in January 2006 but returned later that year to throw for 4,418 yards and 26 touchdowns and was selected as a Pro Bowl alternate. Brees has continued to play at a high level for the Saints.

Mossakowski is known for his arm strength and was listed as having the second-strongest arm in the 2009 class by Rivals.com, Howard said.

Mossakowski was at Commonwealth Stadium for UK's 21-20 win over Arkansas on Oct. 18 and will be back in Lexington for the Georgia game Saturday. Mossakowski said he remains firmly committed to Kentucky.

"I took a long time to find the right school and traveled many places," Mossakowski said. "I know Kentucky is the right place for me."

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