Thursday, August 20, 2009

UCLA's Offensive Line Suffers Another Blow

UCLA's offensive line suffered another blow, an injury to senior guard Micah Kia.

Kia went down clutching his right knee at the end of Wednesday's practice. He was helped to the trainer's shed, then left the field on a golf cart.

Kia was expected to have an MRI on Wednesday night or this morning.

"He'd been having a great camp," Rick Neuheisel said. "It's sad to see two seniors, (Nick) Ekbatani and Kia, fall to injury. This game does that. It gives an opportunity to somebody else. Whoever it is has to pick up the slack and move on.

"But I think Kia will be back. He's that kind of guy. He's worked hard for this season."

The initial diagnosis was a knee sprain.

Starting center Kai Maiava stopped practicing early and stood on the sideline with a bag of ice around his sore left shoulder.

Neuheisel deemed it one of the by-products of playing on the line.

Maiava is the anchor of the young line.

Kia had a productive off-season and was splitting time with true freshman Stanley Hasiak at left guard. Less than a week ago, Ekbatani suffered a knee injury and is out 4 to 6 weeks. Hasiak would appear to be a lock to start the Sept. 5 opener against San Diego State if Kia is out.

Ekbatani and Kia were the only seniors on the offensive line. Last year's line had two seniors in Micah Reed, who started seven games, and Scott Glicksberg, who started five.

Kia started seven times at three positions on the line last year.

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