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Times reporter Bob Condotta keeps the news coming about the Montlake Dawgs.

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August 5, 2008 12:38 PM

Garcia: "I didn't think I would be this far ahead''

Posted by Bob Condotta

UW center Juan Garcia just met with reporters here a little while ago and said he is ecstatic with the progress he has made so far while pointing out that his recovery is still a day-to-day process with no guarantees.

Garcia took part in a few warmup drills on Monday and said "I didn't think I would be this far ahead.''

He said in the back of his mind he's hoping he can return in time for the opener against Oregon though he thinks a more realistic goal is the second game against BYU.

"This week we are taking it to see where I'm at,'' he said. "Everyday I'll do a little more stuff and next week I'll get in for a drill or too if my leg holds up. I'm taking it day-by-day rihgt now, but I'm happy where I'm at. I didn't expect to be at this point. I thought by the time I'd be out there doing a drill it would be sometime after camp.''

Garcia said the real test will come when he decides to go full-go in full-contact drills. He said coaches want him to be patient with that but he's not sure how long he will be able to wait.

"I was talking with coach (Mike) Denbrock and it was like 'man, one of these days I might just have to go full-speed and either I'm going to be able to go or that's the end of that,''' he said. "I'm tired of seeing my guys out there and I'm not with them.''

Denbrock described Garcia's sitation as still being "tenuous'' and wouldn't guess when Garcia might be able to return this year.

Garcia said the foot hasn't healed completely but has gotten a lot stronger. "It's coming along,'' he said. "They didn't expect me to be at this point and everybody says the best thing you did was not getting surgery. It might be a miracle, I don't know, but I'm happy.''

Asked if he could make it back for the Oregon game, Garcia said "it's not even there right now. I'm hoping in the back of my mind. But I don't know. I'm just hoping, before it was like mid-season. Then it was like 'you might be ready for Oklahoma.' I'm just thinking BYU right now. If I can do good this week and next week it might be the opener.''

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