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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Elmores stay close after surgery

    They’ve been known as the “”Twin Towers”” ever since they can remember. They’ve played basketball, soccer and football together ever since they can remember.

    That’s why this year has been a difficult one for the Elmore twin brothers.

    Cory Elmore, a redshirt freshman offensive lineman on the Arizona football team, discovered over the summer that he had a hole in his heart, leading him to have open-heart surgery July 18.

    And now, for the first time since he can remember, Ricky Elmore, a defensive end, is not on the field with his sibling as Cory recovers from his procedure.

    Cory went through a successful 30-minute procedure. Doctors said he would most likely be fully recovered in less than two months.

    When Ricky first learned about Cory’s health, his initial reaction was the worst-case scenario.

    “”I was just like, ‘OK, well, when’s he gonna die?’ “” he said.

    The weeks that led up to the surgery brought many nervous hearts in the Elmore family.

    “”The day before, I just got all nervous,”” Ricky said, “”but then he was in and out of the hospital, and it turned out to be not as bad as I thought it was.””

    Cory’s recovery has gone by very smoothly. He has even been cleared to work out with strength and conditioning coordinator Corey Edmond.

    Ricky said it was tough to see him go through something so serious, but that since it happened, it has brought the family together even more.

    “”He’s a strong guy and he wants to be out here,”” Ricky said. “”I just seeing him sitting there, knowing that he can play, but he’s just not ready yet. It’s tough for him.””

    Due to the injury, Cory will apply for a medical redshirt and is determined to come back at full strength by next season.

    “”I could be playing, but this operation is just a big bump to get over,”” Cory said. “”I want my four years of eligibility and I want to play, and I want to get out there as soon as possible.

    “”I just decided three weeks ago that I want to keep playing football. That’s what I have my heart set on.””

    Cory said the biggest deciding factor in his return was seeing Ricky on the field for the season opener against BYU. Seeing his brother making plays, without him on the sideline, lit a fire inside Cory, motivating him to come back.

    “”Since then, it’s multiplied by about 100,”” Cory said. “”We just haven’t played together since high school, and it just makes me want to go out there and compete with him. When he does well it just makes me want to go out there and dominate with him.

    “”I want to come back and hit

    people and strike fear in the other team.””Cory was reminded of Arizona’s home game against New Mexico on Sept. 15, when sat in the stands wearing Ricky’s jersey in the Lobos’ section, taunting all the visiting fans whenever his brother made a play.

    “”I would stand up and yell ‘That’s my brother!’ “” Cory said.

    Cory went to last week’s game at USC with 26 family members from nearby Simi Valley.

    Cory lost more than 30 pounds following the surgery, but he has recovered all of it back and more, and now says he is at 274, nearly 15 pounds over his listed

    playing weight.

    Coaches have told Cory they don’t want to rush him back, giving him full say on when he wants to return to action.

    “”Overall, I’m in no hurry, because I want to be physically able to do it,”” Cory said. “”I just don’t want to put the coaches in a bad situation if anything does happen.””

    Ricky said the situation made the entire family closer.

    “”It made us all realize that something can happen to your family – something did happen, and it just got taken care of,”” Ricky said. “”It really brought us all together.

    “”We’re all very lucky and fortunate for how it happened.””

    Added Cory: “”We’ve played football our whole life together. There’s no reason to stop now.””

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