TU Notebook: Burnham's status
BY BILL HAISTEN World Sports Writer
Monday, September 03, 2012
9/03/12 at 4:54 AM
On Sunday, University of Tulsa coach Bill Blankenship still was unable to provide a specific report on senior wide receiver Bryan Burnham. After totaling nine catches for 90 yards, Burnham sustained a right-knee injury during the third quarter of Saturday's loss at Iowa State.
"What the doctors tell us, it looks like a significant knee injury," Blankenship said. "With the holiday weekend, it may be tough getting an MRI before (Monday) or the next day. Certainly, he's out for now."
Last season, Burnham had 54 receptions, averaging 15.7 yards per catch while scoring nine touchdowns. If he is sidelined for several games or for the rest of the season, TU loses a big-play presence in its passing game. At Iowa State, Thomas Roberson and Keyarris Garrett each had four catches and a touchdown.
Referring to the possible long-term loss of Burnham, Blankenship said, "I think we've got another group of guys who can play. The attitude we've always tried to take is that it's the next man up.
"As heartbreaking as (Burnham's injury) is, you've got to step up. Somebody else has to make some plays."
First-year freshman wideout Josh Atkinson was outstanding during preseason camp but did not play at Iowa State. Blankenship was hoping to redshirt Atkinson and bring him back in 2013 as a bigger and more seasoned pass-catcher. But now, depending on Burnham's status and the performance of other TU receivers, Blankenship may have no choice but to use Atkinson in the rotation. Blankenship said Khiry Cooper, a senior transfer from Nebraska, also may get an opportunity for playing time.
TU's Cody Green and Cole Way react after a touchdown at Jack Trice Stadium in Ames, Iowa during the first half of the TU vs. Iowa State game. TOM GILBERT / Tulsa World