Southern WR Devon Gales has 'successful' spinal surgery

Dr. Saturday
Members of the Southern and Georgia training staff tend to Southern wide receiver Devon Gales (33) after he was injured in the second half of an NCAA college football game against Georgia Saturday, Sept. 26, 2015, in Athens , Ga. Gales was placed on backboard and taken off the field on a cart. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
Members of the Southern and Georgia training staff tend to Southern wide receiver Devon Gales (33) after he was injured in the second half of an NCAA college football game against Georgia Saturday, Sept. 26, 2015, in Athens , Ga. Gales was placed on backboard and taken off the field on a cart. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)

Southern University wide receiver Devon Gales remains hospitalized in Athens, Ga., Monday after suffering a spinal injury in Saturday’s game at Georgia.

According to a statement from the university, Gales had successful surgery on Sunday afternoon to stabilize “several fractures in his neck.” The school said Gales has “movement in his upper body and remains in good spirits.” He will stay at Athens Regional Hospital “until he is released to return to Baton Rouge for further treatment.”

The injury occurred while Gales, a redshirt sophomore, was blocking on a third quarter kickoff return.

According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Gales’ parents were flown into Athens from Louisiana “at UGA’s expense on Saturday night, then driven to Athens by Georgia staff.” Additionally, Southern’s team doctor, head athletics trainer and compliance director all stayed with Gales in Athens after the game.

Bulldogs head coach Mark Richt and offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer visited Gales at the hospital on Sunday.

“We’re trying to cover him up with as much love as we can, and let him know that we care, let him know that we’re here to help,” Richt said per the AJC. “We’re just gonna continue to pray, and I know the Bulldog nation is behind him as well. There may come a time where there may be some needs. Not exactly sure yet. But it does come to that I’m going to be calling all Dawgs to get involved and to help out.”

In its statement, Southern expressed gratitude to Georgia for the school’s help during this situation.

The Gales family, along with Interim Athletics Director Roman Banks and the entire Southern University family, would like to thank Athens General, The University of Georgia and all of the many people who aided in his care during this unfortunate event. We are extremely thankful for all of the prayers and well wishes that Devon has received from many people nationwide.

Also, special thanks to the Georgia football program and Sports Medicine staff for all of their love and support that they have shown Devon during this difficult time.

Due to the overwhelming amount of love shown to them from everyone, the family is asking for privacy at this time. They appreciate and request your continued prayers and thoughts.

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Sam Cooper is a contributor for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!

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