The length of James Franklin's injury is not an academic question, given the stakes for Missouri over the next few weeks. And, despite reports to the contrary from CBS and ESPN, Mizzou coach Gary Pinkel is saying that at the moment, we don't know.
I’m not going to just throw numbers out there. Anything you see out there is not accurate because we haven’t talked about it.
That's not exactly a flat denial there. It likely means that there is no official timetable for Franklin's return -- which wouldn't be surprising -- and won't be for another couple of days. That doesn't mean that someone inside the program doesn't have a good idea of how long Franklin is likely to be out. In fact, separated shoulders often take about six weeks to heal up, so someone making an educated guess would likely estimate the exact time frame that's been reported.
In the meantime, the fact that even Pinkel says it will be a few weeks before Franklin takes the field again likely eliminates the quarterback for the two most important games left on Mizzou's schedule: the looming home games against Florida and South Carolina. If the Tigers lose those two games, what happens when Franklin comes back likely won't matter that much.
But if Missouri can win those two without Franklin, watch out. Because not only would that show that the Tigers could be even more dangerous than we think with Franklin, but he also might come back just in time for a potential trip to the SEC Championship Game, and wouldn't that be something to see?