Greg Brooks return to Arkansas Razorbacks in black buster trade by……READ MORE….

Two days after Greg Brooks underwent emergency surgery to remove a brain tumor, coach Brian Kelly visited him in the hospital.

Effects of heavy sedation had not worn off, so Kelly could not have a full conversation Sunday with LSU’s fifth-year senior safety. But Kelly knew what Brooks had expressed before the operation.

“He was pretty clear about playing again this year,” said Kelly, chuckling. “That’s Greg Brooks.”

Brooks’ determination to return this fall came as no surprise to those who know him. He once played with a fracture in his wrist. The New Orleans area native did not get an LSU scholarship offer because he was considered too small, then started immediately at Arkansas. Whenever doubts arise, he usually proves them wrong.

“He’s a fighter,” former West Jefferson High coach Cyril Crutchfield said. “He’s not going to give up.”

Though Brooks has faced obstacles before, nothing compared to this situation. After experiencing vertigo early in preseason camp, which forced him to miss a week of practice, Kelly said Brooks had “another episode of dizziness” on Sept. 13. An MRI revealed the tumor. Brooks’ family said in a statement he underwent successful surgery to remove the “large” mass.

As the family awaited biopsy results, it was unknown Friday if or when Brooks could play again this season. He’s the kind of person who wants to come back as soon as possible, but Kelly said “there are so many unanswered questions.” Brooks remains out indefinitely and will miss No. 12 LSU’s game Saturday night against Arkansas.

Brooks’ absence weighs heavily on both sides of the game. Arkansas believed in the 5-foot-10 defensive back from Harvey, and he still has connections there. LSU added him as a transfer last year, and not only did he become one of the team’s best defensive players, he was named a captain last month on the day before his 22nd birthday.

“It’s unfortunate that had to happen to him, a guy that went under the radar and then came back home and tried to do everything the right way,” LSU center Charles Turner said. “That struck home for us and hit our hearts hard because he’s a leader on this team.”

It won’t be easy for LSU to replace Brooks, both for his role in the secondary and his presence in the locker room. He plays multiple positions. Teammates look to him in tough moments.

As the season keeps going, multiple players said they will draw inspiration from him, trying to replicate his passion while he hopes to return.

“The one thing I feel confident about,” Crutchfield said, “it’s just a matter of time before he’ll be back on the field.”

A few weeks before his senior season at West Jefferson, Brooks suffered a fracture in his wrist. The projected recovery timeline meant he would miss games, but the idea didn’t sit well with him.

Brooks told Crutchfield he would be ready for the opener. He found a doctor who cleared him and played with a soft cast.

“That’s the type of person that he is,” Crutchfield said.

Brooks had transferred from Archbishop Shaw to West Jefferson after his sophomore year because he wanted to enroll early wherever he signed. He played all over the field the next two seasons. Brooks took snaps at quarterback, running back, wide receiver, safety, cornerback, linebacker and returner. Crutchfield said he could have played defensive line if needed.

Crutchfield has coached a lot of players, including former LSU running back Leonard Fournette. In all of his years, he never saw someone with a higher football IQ than Brooks. He constantly studied film to get the most out of himself, and he texted coaches with questions to make sure he understood everyone else’s responsibilities, too.

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