Head coach Mark Richt said King would likely need to practice by Wednesday to have a shot at playing, and another source close to the situation said King would not make the trip.
For his part, King said the final decision would not be his.
“If I could play, I’d play right now, but it’s on the team doctor, so I don’t have anything to say on how I’m feeling or when I come back,” King said.
King has been sidelined with a sore hamstring since Aug. 12 and has watched his spot on the depth chart slowly slide ever since.
While the sophomore tailback said he has been anxious to get back to work, Richt said the team is being cautious with King’s recovery.
“We don’t want to make him play if he’s not ready,” Richt said. “And if he can’t, it’s a long season. We want him back healthy, that’s the main thing.”
For King, missing the opening game won’t be nearly as difficult as missing the past three weeks of practice.
At the start of the preseason, King, sophomore Richard Samuel and redshirt freshman Carlton Thomas were among five tailbacks battling for the starting job. Samuel has moved to the top of the depth chart in King’s absence after two strong scrimmages, and Thomas is the current No. 2, Richt said.
“The hardest part has been me working so hard in the summer and preseason, and then getting hurt in the first scrimmage,” King said. “But it’s a long season, and I know I’m going to bounce back and be 100 percent, so I’m not going to worry about it.”
If King can return, he would be the third tailback option against Oklahoma State. If not, Richt said Kalvin Daniels would be next off the bench, with fullback Fred Munzenmaier also serving as an option at tailback.
King said he has been getting in two rehab sessions per day since the injury, but won’t force his return. When he does get back in action, however, he said he expects to again compete for a starting job.
“I believe that’s not just at the running backs position,” King said. “You’re always going to compete. That’s football. Whenever I come back, we’re going to compete still.”