April 10, 2008

Linebackers on the mend

Yet another player from the University of Southern California football team who is battling an untimely injury is senior weakside linebacker Kaluka Maiava. He waited patiently for three years behind future first-round NFL draft pick Keith Rivers, and as spring practice approached he was ready to step into the role to form the most talented group of starting linebackers in the country. Unfortunately, Maiava suffered an injury to his left wrist and thumb, and has been unable to take part in any of the full-contact drills this spring.

"It's real hard and frustrating," Maiava said about sitting out. "Keith left, so it was my time to shine but then I got hurt. It's not all bad though, I've got a lot of mental reps to prepare myself.

"I'm also helping out the younger guys, so that's good too."

Tuesday marked the first time that Maiava joined Brian Cushing and Rey Maualuga - both of whom have battled injuries recently, as well - on the field at the same time.

"I'm really not contributing yet," he said with a laugh. "I only got to do a little bit of 7-on-7s, I can't do any contact stuff, but it's good to run around with my pads on and get my legs back a little bit."

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