A bad Day at Practice – LA Times

By Chris Foster, Los Angeles Times

Even the relentlessly positive around the UCLA football program were tested Wednesday.

The news of the day: Guard Eddie Williams will undergo surgery to have a plate put in his fractured left ankle and is lost for the season. Cornerback Aaron Hester will not play against Washington on Saturdaas his injured right leg is not responding. Receiver Morrell Presley left practice after being knocked to the turf and landing on his left shoulder. Wide receiver Randall Carroll beat Presley to the training room after suffering a groin injury. Presley was injured after catching a pass, when free safety Dalton Hilliard clobbered him.

“Usually in practice we wave [contact] off,” Presley said. “I thought he was going to run past me, then he hit me. But I don’t think I’ll be out that long.”

The news on Hester was more worrisome. A starter when the season began, he suffered a fractured fibula in the season opener, missing six games. He re-injured the right leg when teammate Sheldon Price leg-whipped him while the two were making tackle against Oregon State. Hester is expected to have an X-ray today.

“It doesn’t feel broken, it’s just real tender,” Hester said. “I can’t do anything explosive off it.

“They told me if I didn’t practice [Wednesday] that I wouldn’t play this week. It stinks, but I don’t want to shatter my leg.”

Williams, who was injured against California, will have the surgery because, “the bone is not healing as well as we hoped,” Coach Rick Neuheisel said. He should be able to participate in spring practice, Neuheisel said.

Center of attention

Center Kai Maiava continued to rest his sore right elbow in practice, which left Jake Dean playing center with the first-team offense the last two days.

Maiava hyper-extended his elbow against Oregon State, but he said he expected to play against Washington. Dean, a senior, has played little this season and has worked mostly at guard and tackle. He appeared against San Diego State in the season opener at tackle.

“Playing every [offensive line] position this year has helped me,” Dean said. “Now I just don’t know what the interior line does, but I know what everyone does. It has made me a better player mentally.”

Quick hits

Running back Darrell Scott, who is transferring from Colorado, is unlikely to land at UCLA, sources inside the program said. UCLA already has five tailbacks, plus a commitment from Westlake Village Oak Christian’s Malcolm Jones. . . . Defensive tackle Jerzy Siewierski (foot) said that he has improved to the point where he may play against Washington State on Nov. 14. That game will start at 2 p.m.