Monday , Feb , 06 , 2006 C.Y. Ellis

K-State’s Wooldridge to have neck surgery

=== K-State’s Wooldridge to have neck surgery ===

Manhattan, KS (Sports Network) – Kansas State men’s head coach Jim Wooldridge
will undergo neck surgery Wednesday to remove a bulging disk.

Wooldridge will be unable to coach the Wildcats when they compete against Iowa
State the same evening of his surgery. His return to coaching will be dictated
by the speed of his recovery and a medical clearance from his physician.

Assistant coach Jimmy Elgas will serve as the team’s interim head coach in
Wooldridge’s absence.

“I have been suffering with this condition for much of the season and it has
become more acute over the past 10 days,” said Wooldridge. “The doctors have
informed me that without immediate attention that this condition will only
become more serious and permanent. I hate to step away from the team at such a
critical juncture of the season, but I believe that I have to take measures
now to correct these health issues.”

Wooldridge is suffering from a “significant disk protrusion” at the C3-4
vertebrae in his neck. It is creating pressure on his spinal cord causing
numbness in his upper and lower extremities. Doctors also discovered a disk
bulge and a small bone spur at the C5-6 vertebrae.

Kansas State is 12-7 overall this season and 3-5 in the Big 12. After facing
Iowa State on Wednesday, the team travels to Missouri on Sunday and Texas Tech
next Wednesday.