Kenny Cooper injury update from Paul Johnson

Georgia Tech football coach Paul Johnson was born Aug. 20, 1957, in Newland, North Carolina. Johnson was hired and introduced Dec. 7, 2007 as Tech's 12th football coach, beginning with John Heisman in 1904. Tech defeated Jacksonville State 41-14 on Aug. 28, 2008, in Johnson's debut as Yellow Jackets coach. Johnson's Georgia Southern teams won Division I-AA (now FCS) national championships in 1999 and 2000. Johnson coached six seasons at Navy and was 43-19 over the final five, after a 2-10 first season. Jo

Georgia Tech center Kenny Cooper is ahead of schedule for his rehabilitation, coach Paul Johnson said Thursday at the team’s media day at Bobby Dodd Stadium. That doesn’t necessarily mean he’ll play in the season opener, though.

Cooper is recovering from a foot injury suffered near the end of the Yellow Jackets’ spring practice. A returning starter, he’s an integral piece of the Tech line and offense.

“It’s going good,” Johnson said. “He’s ahead of schedule, and he’s here in camp, so we’ve got a pretty good idea of when he’ll be available.”

Johnson added that he is not yet cleared to practice. Asked about whether he would be available to play in the opener against Alcorn State on Sept. 1, Johnson replied, “I don’t know. We’ll see about the first game.”

Tech’s second game is against South Florida the following Saturday in Tampa, Fla., followed by the ACC opener at Pittsburgh on Sept. 15.