When Paul Richardson suffered a torn ACL during spring practice back in April, it was widely assumed that the Colorado wide receiver would miss the entire 2012 season.
While that still may be the case — or is even very likely to be the case — the player breathed a bit of hope into his availability for the upcoming season.
In a tweet posted to his Twitter account Tuesday, Richardson wrote that “I was cleared by my doctor and trainers to start running today and I’m not even 3 months out of surgery yet.” That optimism, however, was tempered somewhat by the football program itself, with head athletic trainer Miguel Rueda saying in a statement that it’s still too early in the rehab process to determine whether the receiver will play this season.
“Paul was cleared for straight-ahead jogging and running,” the statement read. “He’s not at the point where he can make cuts, run routes, etc. He is progressing nicely and faster than expected, but it’s too early to predict what his status is for the upcoming season. We’ll monitor his progress, but whether he can play in any or all of the games this fall can’t be determined for some time yet.”
The good news for Buffs fans, however, is the fact that Rueda acknowledged that Richardson is indeed “progressing… faster than expected.”
Despite missing a third of the games due to injury, Richardson finished third on the team last season in receptions (39) and receiving yards (555), and was second in receiving touchdowns (five). 11 of his receptions and 284 of his yards came in a single game, CU’s overtime loss to Cal.
With the Buffs’ two leading receivers off to the NFL, having Richardson available for even part of the 2012 season would be a significant development for second-year head coach Jon Embree and his offensive staff.