Southern football coach Dawson Odums took his turn on the Southwestern Athletic Conference weekly coaches teleconference Monday from Athens, Ga.
Odums, like most coaches, usually phones in from his office, but he returned to Athens to be with Jaguars wide receiver Devon Gales, who underwent successful surgery Sunday to repair several neck fractures he suffered in a 48-6 loss at Georgia on Saturday.
It’s unknown when Gales will be released from Athens Regional to return to Baton Rouge and continue his treatment. No prognosis has been released, but Odums said Gales, a redshirt sophomore from Baton Rouge, has “the will and determination” to overcome “the road in front of him.”
Gales’ parents are with him as are wide receivers coach Chris Coleman and the Jaguars head trainer and team doctor.
“He has a lot of support,” said Odums, who thanked the Georgia community for its outpouring to Gales and his family. Bulldogs head coach Mark Richt and others visited Gales on Sunday.
Gales was injured in the third quarter when his helmet collided with Bulldogs place-kicker Marshall Morgan as Gales threw a block on a kickoff return.
Odums said he spoke with Gales on Monday and Gales was in good spirits. He said the team’s morale has been “pretty good.”
“It’s a new experience for me and it’s a new experience for the team,” Odums said. “But this brings you closer together. This is a team that pulls together, fights together and prays together.”
Southern, which has an open date this week, was off Monday and will return to practice Tuesday. Odums said he’ll be back for that workout.
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