Injuries may be common in football, but to have two former Bulldogs experience similar calamities within weeks of each other seems unlikely. Tell that to Antwone "Baby" Johnson and Greg Minor, though.
Johnson, a member of Thomson's 1,000-yard club at running back, broke his leg in two places during the first half of Georgia Military College's second game this season. Before the injury, he had gained 94 yards and scored touchdown in the game.
"He got tackled, almost scored. He got tackled at the 1-yard line, and ended up breaking his leg," said Bert Williams, GMC's head coach. "He kind of got tackled over a guy that was on the ground. It was just kind of a freaky deal."
The break required surgery which took place on Tuesday. He will be out for six to eight weeks, but could receive a red-shirt year. That would end the season for Johnson, who was an essential part of the GMC offense, Coach Williams said.
"Potentially he could play that last game, maybe the last two games if it went real fast on the recovery," Coach Williams said. "...That was a big hit for us, offensively. He was a big part of what we do, and we'll sure miss him. He had done some good things for us."
Johnson's injury will most likely have a negative impact on a major school signing him after this, his final season at GMC. Coach Williams is confident that Johnson will get a chance to move on, though.
"You show them what he's capable of doing. I mean it's a break. It's not something that's impossible to overcome," he said. "But just having a limited amount of film and all that, and coming off of injury, that'll knock some folk out. We're going to do the best we can to get him moved on."
Minor, a former Thomson offensive lineman, broke his foot during a scrimmage game prior to the season opener for Charleston Southern. The break effectively ended his season, said Minor, who used to serve as a correspondent for The McDuffie Mirror.
"I have to have surgery on it as soon as possible, which has taken me off the field for a little bit," Minor said in an email. "I love it though. The energy here is amazing. It's not Thomson, but the thought of playing Division I football makes it all worthwhile."
The injury did require surgery on Minor's foot. But everything leading up to that was positive to the freshman, who was excited about his team recently signing to play the University of Florida for the next two seasons.
"It's pretty demanding handling weightlifting at 5:30 in the morning, then having meetings, then classes, then practice, but it will all pay off," he said.