July 8, 2011

Injury slows Rochell

A lower back injury has ELCA lineman Isaac Rochelle questioning whether or not he will be able to attend Dawg Night next week in Athens.

"I'm not really 100 percent sure because I've been battling not a terrible injury, but it's one of those things when I keep constantly pushing myself it gets worse," Rochelle told UGASports Friday night. "I may go; it all depends."

But the 6-foot-5, 225-pounder with 14 offers to date made it clear he's not going to take any chances, either.

"It's very minor, but I feel it," Rochelle said. "I may take a rest because I want to be good for our season. I really don't want to mess around with it."

Seven of Rochelle's 14 offers are from SEC schools (Arkansas, South Carolina, Mississippi, Mississippi State, Tennessee and Vanderbilt), with Georgia also considering the 2013 recruit but without making an offer of its own.

Rochelle admits he hopes the Bulldogs will eventually come through.

"It is (important) because they're the home-town school, but it's not something where I'm going to chase after offers," he said. "If they offer me, I'm definitely going to consider it, but if they don't I'm not going to get distressed over it; I'll just go somewhere else and play."

He discounted the notion that not attending Dawg Night would hurt his chances.

"I don't think so because they've seen me. The guy who sends my film is a Georgia fan, so they're going to get my film. I don't think it's going to hinder me at all," Rochelle said. "I think it may prolong the process, but I don't think it will hurt me at all."

Either way, Rochelle, who also holds offers from Clemson, Pittsburgh and Virginia Tech said he plans on taking his time.

After all, he's got two more years of high school to go.

"It's not that far, but it's one of those things where you have to slow down and let everything play out," he said. "Once you feel like you're ready and you've found the right place, that's when you make your decision."

As for Georgia, Rochelle said he understands why the Bulldogs might be taking a wait-and-see approach.

"What I really think they're doing is they're waiting to see how big I get," he said. "Georgia and SEC schools want their D-linemen to be like 290 where ACC schools like 270-265 guys who run a 4.6, 4.7, so I think it just depends on how big I get."

Anthony Dasher is the managing editor for UGASports
and he can be reached via email at dash@ugasports.com.