Dwayne Thomas, LSU’s starting nickelback, is expected to miss the rest of the season with a torn ACL in his right knee, a source confirmed to The Advocate on Monday.
Thomas was injured during the second quarter of LSU’s 63-7 win over New Mexico State on Saturday. Coach Les Miles on Monday would not reveal details of Thomas’ status.
While blitzing Saturday, Thomas cut back, and his knee twisted. He had to be helped off the field and needed crutches to get to the locker room.
Thomas, a 6-foot, 180-pound sophomore who went to O.P. Walker High School, has been the Tigers’ fifth defensive back in the nickel formation. He’s also a key cog in LSU’s Mustang package — a formation that includes six defensive backs.
Thomas is fifth on the team with 24 tackles and has 2.5 tackles for loss. He’s the primary blitzer off the edge in the Mustang.
True freshman Jamal Adams is expected to replace Thomas. Adams, a highly touted Texas native, has rotated some with the starting safeties.
Asked Monday who would play in Thomas’ possible absence, Miles mentioned Adams and true freshman cornerback Ed Paris.
Other injury updates
Fullback Connor Neighbors was expected to practice Monday, and defensive tackle Quentin Thomas’ return this week is in doubt, Miles said.
Neighbors suffered what SEC Network broadcasters called a concussion during the first half against New Mexico State, but Miles doesn’t reveal details of injuries. Sophomore Melvin Jones replaced Neighbors.
Thomas did not dress out Saturday after suffering a left arm injury in the loss to Mississippi State on Sept. 20. He’s already playing with a torn biceps in his right arm. Freshman Davon Godchaux started in place of Thomas against New Mexico State; he’s listed as the co-starter with Thomas on this week’s depth chart.
Defensive tackle Frank Herron, injured last week in an off-the-field incident, is “more likely” than Thomas to return to full practice this week, Miles said.
The waiting game
LSU announced that the kickoff time and television assignment for the Tigers’ Oct. 11 game at Florida were placed on a six-day hold by CBS.
CBS has a doubleheader that day. Time options are 11 a.m. (CBS), 2:30 p.m. (CBS), 5 p.m. (ESPN), 6:30 p.m. (SEC Network) and 8 p.m. (ESPN). An announcement is expected Sunday.
LSU’s game Saturday at Auburn will start at 6 p.m. on ESPN. All of LSU’s games so far have been night kickoffs.
These are the SEC games being considered for the Oct. 11 TV slots: LSU at Florida, Auburn at Mississippi State, Alabama at Arkansas, Ole Miss at Texas A&M and Missouri at Georgia.
Freshman receiver D.J. Chark moved up one spot in the depth chart released Monday. Chark moved past Kevin Spears for the No. 3 spot at the “Z” receiver spot behind starter Travin Dural and John Diarse. … Auburn starting linebackers Cassanova McKinzy and Kris Frost are “day-to-day” after suffering injuries during AU’s 45-17 win over Louisiana Tech on Saturday, the Montgomery Advertiser reported. McKinzy, the team leader in tackles, suffered a mild concussion, and Frost has a left knee injury.