Richt said he watched King run the sidelines during practice Friday, but couldn’t speculate as to when the sophomore tailback might be healthy enough to return from a sore hamstring that has sidelined him for the majority of the preseason and kept him out of the competition for the starting tailback job that now appears to belong to Richard Samuel.
“You just can’t predict hamstrings,” Richt said. “We’re hopeful that he’s ready to practice early next week, but I don’t know how he’s going to feel.”
Georgia has just three full-contact practices left before departing for Oklahoma State, which means the pressure is on for King to prove he’s healthy enough to play in the game.
Offensive coordinator Mike Bobo said King would likely need to fully participate in a practice no later than Tuesday if the tailback was going to be part of Georgia’s game plan against the Cowboys.
“I don’t have a definite timeline because you never know what’s going to happen with your other guys, but Monday and Tuesday are going to be the bulk of the work days next week,” Bobo said. “I’d definitely like to have him out there Monday, and Tuesday at the latest.”
Georgia is likely to bring only about 70 players to Stillwater, Okla. for the game, making each seat on the plane a valuable one, Richt said. Whether one of those seats belongs to King or not will ultimately be decided by the potential impact the coaches feel he can have in the game.
“We’re not taking anybody on the plane unless we think they can play in that game and help us win,” Richt said. “So if we don’t think he has any chance of playing, he won’t go. If we think he’s got a chance of playing, he’ll be on the plane, and if we need him, we’ll put him in.”