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Turcotte's Mind Rests Easy Thanks to Two Healthy Knees
Tailback Jared Turcotte began winter workouts on campus at the University of Maine this week with two healthy knees after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on one of them last month.
Turcotte was one of several players who underwent offseason surgeries when the University of Maine’s football season ended after a first-round playoff loss to Northern Iowa. It was Maine’s first postseason appearance since 2002.
“We were really excited, not only (for) him, but we had a number of quick turnarounds on some surgeries,” said Maine Coach Jack Cosgrove. “There is an upside and a downside to when they go in. The doctor hopes it’s this but fears it might be that. There was less work to be done with this one (Turcotte’s knee) is the best way to say it.”
Turcotte said he quickly felt like he was back to normal and plans to work on his speed and quickness this offseason.
“My number one goal for the offseason is to try and get faster,” said Turcotte. “You can never be fast enough.”
Turcotte emerged as Maine’s rushing leader with 625 yards in a breakout redshirt freshman year, but struggled with pain down the stretch.
“Jared, to his credit, was really working through some difficult times the last quarter of the year,” said Cosgrove.
Turcotte, a Sports Network second-team All-American, said his focus can be even clearer now with the injury behind him.
“It’s going to be nice to have two healthy knees now,” he said. “Playing with an injury you know you have to have a surgery on is tough. It’s good to have that out of the back of my mind now.”
Turcotte’s teammates also began winter workouts on Monday.
Among them is former Iona quarterback Warren Smith, who is enrolled in classes and will compete for playing time this spring, said Cosgrove.
Iona dissolved its football program following the 2008 season, leaving 112 players searching for a new place to play.
Maine’s coaches got a chance to see the 6-foot-1, 180-pound freshman in action when the Gaels lost to the Black Bears 55-7 on Nov. 2. Smith completed 19 of 31 passes for 122 yards, including a 25-yard touchdown pass. He was intercepted twice.
“We were impressed with the fact that he was a first-year freshman playing,” said Cosgrove. “And when Iona dropped the program it was a bonus that he’s immediately eligible.”
Quarterback Adam Farkes, who was the Black Bears’ starter until a season-ending injury, left the program in December to transfer to a Division III school. Cosgrove said the team still plans to recruit another quarterback for the incoming class as planned.
“The fact Adam left, this is kind of like a trade,” said Cosgrove. “We lost a QB in a transfer situation, and you need numbers there.”
Michael Brusko, who was 6-2 after taking over as starter following Farkes’ injury, will be followed on the depth chart by former Portland High standout Chris Treister and Smith.
Turcotte’s mind rests easy thanks to two healthy knees
by Jenn Menendez, The Portland Press-Herald