By JOANNE KORTH
© St. Petersburg Times, published January 17, 2001
Florida junior guard Teddy Dupay, who had surgery last week for a herniated disc in his lower back, may not return this season, men's basketball coach Billy Donovan said.
Dupay had surgery Wednesday and was released from Shands at the University of Florida, Gainesville on Friday. He remains bedridden. He could be cleared for light exercise in a pool within a week but cannot do anything strenuous for at least four weeks, Donovan said.
Dupay was the team's third-leading scorer, averaging 14.1 points per game. The earliest he might return is late February, for UF's final four regular season games, but Donovan is not counting on it.
"The biggest thing with his surgery is there's no rehabilitation," Donovan said. "He's got to let the thing heal. I'm not going to rush him back. I'd rather have him healthy, and if he misses this year, we'll get him back for his senior year."
Senior forward Brent Wright, the second-leading scorer (15.9 points), remains sidelined after surgery Jan. 4 to repair a stress fracture in his right foot. He should return in 2-4 weeks.
PALMER FILLS IN: Senior quarterback Jesse Palmer will replace Florida State's Chris Weinke in the Senior Bowl on Saturday in Mobile, Ala. Weinke withdrew because of a foot injury. Palmer was 6-for-15 for 66 yards in the Gridiron Classic in Orlando last weekend.
BASKETBALL HOMECOMING: After opening SEC play with three road games, the 10th-ranked women's team plays Auburn at 7 p.m. Thursday at the O'Connell Center. The Gators (13-2, 2-1) are coming off a 73-59 loss at No. 4 Georgia in which they failed to score in the final three minutes. The Tigers (13-5, 1-3) have lost three straight.
ALUMNI DOWN UNDER: Two former UF women's tennis players have top seeds in doubles at the Australian Open. Lisa Raymond, the 1992 and '93 NCAA singles champion, and partner Rennae Stubs of Australia are the No. 1 seed, and Nicole Arendt, an eight-time All-American, and partner Ai Sugiyama of Japan are the No. 2 seed.
HIGH PRAISE: For the fifth consecutive season, SEC baseball coaches picked Florida to win the Eastern Division title. The Gators, ranked No. 13 by Baseball America and Collegiate Baseball, return 22 letter-winners from a 44-23-1 team that lost in last season's NCAA region final. The season starts with a two-game home series Feb. 3-4 against Miami.
ON THE BEAM: The gymnastics team, ranked No. 10 by GymInfo, will have its first home meet at 7 p.m. Friday against No. 5 Alabama. The Gators, forced to count a fall on balance beam in its total, lost 196.50-195.10 at No. 2 Georgia on Saturday.
- Joanne Korth covers Florida. She can be reached at 800-333-7505, ext.7306, or by e-mail at email@example.com.