Best to miss third straight game

Updated: December 1, 2009, 5:24 PM ET
Associated Press

BERKELEY, Calif. -- California star tailback Jahvid Best has been ruled out of this week's game against Washington as he recovers from a frightening fall and concussion that sidelined him last month.

Coach Jeff Tedford said Tuesday that Best is doing well in his recovery but there has been no talk about when he might return to the field. This will be the third straight game he has missed since sustaining the injury Nov. 7 against Oregon State Beavers.

Best flew to Pittsburgh to get checked out by a concussion specialist and is expected to return to campus Wednesday.

"We're just making sure the head is 100 percent completely clear," Tedford said. "We've given it a lot of time. It's something we said after that happened that we would by no means take any risk or anything like that with him. He's back there getting evaluated and making sure everything is OK."

Best was injured when he hurdled an Oregon State defender at the end of a 7-yard touchdown run. He vaulted into the air over safety Cameron Collins and then was bumped even higher by another defender before falling on his back and head from about 8 feet in the air.

Best's helmet came off on impact and he briefly lost consciousness. He spent one night in the hospital with the concussion and sore back.

"His head has been doing fine," Tedford said. "His thing now is he has a sore back. That's the main thing with him. He hasn't had any symptoms with headaches or anything like that for a couple weeks now. The back has been what's bothering him."

Best had originally targeted Saturday's regular season finale at Washington as his possible return date. The 19th-ranked Golden Bears will also have a bowl game later this month.

Best, one of the most dynamic running backs in the country and a preseason Heisman Trophy contender, has 16 touchdowns and 867 yards rushing this season. He also has 22 catches for 213 yards.


Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press