College Football Injury Report: Week 11

Nov 5, 2016; Clemson, SC, USA; Clemson Tigers quarterback Deshaun Watson (4) looks to pass the ball during the first quarter against the Syracuse Orange at Clemson Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports
Nov 5, 2016; Clemson, SC, USA; Clemson Tigers quarterback Deshaun Watson (4) looks to pass the ball during the first quarter against the Syracuse Orange at Clemson Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports /

We take a look at all the key injuries impacting college football stars around the nation in Week 11.

The 2016 college football regular season is hitting the stretch run, making every game critical for national contenders down the stretch.

Week 11 doesn’t feature many marquee match-ups for a Saturday in mid-November, but college football always promises some level of chaos. The game of the week will be in Seattle, where No. 4 Washington will try to remain undefeated against surging No. 20 USC.

Elsewhere, No. 3 Michigan will travel to Iowa, while No. 9 Auburn will take on Georgia in the Deep South’s Oldest Rivalry. The only other ranked game of the weekend will be in Fayetteville between No. 24 LSU and No. 25 Arkansas.

Health is one of the most important factors at this time of the year for playoff contenders. Top teams like Alabama and Clemson are dealing with several injuries and will have their depth tested over the rest of the season.

Here is a roundup of key Week 11 injuries around the nation, including a number of Power Five quarterbacks.


Deshaun Watson, Clemson. The Heisman contender left last Saturday’s blowout win over Syracuse in the second quarter after suffering an apparent shoulder injury on a scramble. Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said Watson is dealing with a deep bruise, but has been progressing well in practice this week and is expected to play on Saturday against Pittsburgh.

Chad Kelly, Ole Miss. Kelly’s wild college career is over after the senior tore his ACL and lateral meniscus in last Saturday’s win over Georgia Southern. After being dismissed from Clemson, Kelly has been the best quarterback in the SEC over the past two seasons and has accounted for over 3,000 yards of offense in 2016. Freshman Jason Pellerin will take over for the Rebels this weekend against No. 8 Texas A&M.

Trevor Knight, Texas A&M. The Rebels won’t be the only team using a backup quarterback in College Station this weekend, as Knight suffered a season-ending shoulder injury in a loss to Mississippi State. Knight has been terrific for the Aggies this year after transferring from Oklahoma with nearly 2,500 total yards and 23 touchdowns. Junior quarterback Jake Hubenak will be the starter for the rest of the season.

Tommy Armstrong Jr., Nebraska. The fact that Armstong Jr. is even questionable for this game is a good sign after he was placed on a backboard following a scary hit to the head last weekend against Ohio State. Armstrong Jr. later returned to the field in street clothes, with the injury being ruled a concussion. The Cornhuskers have not provided an update on Armstong Jr.’s status and will start Ryker Fyfe if he’s not ready to go against Minnesota.

Manny Wilkins, Arizona State. Wilkins is expected to return from a leg injury that kept him out of last week’s loss to Oregon to start on Thursday night against No. 15 Utah. The sophomore has missed two full games and been limited in others dealing with numerous issues over the course of the season, although the Sun Devils are 5-3 when he starts.

Luke Del Rio, Florida. It’s been a tough season for Del Rio, who missed extensive time earlier in the year with a sprained MCL and suffered a significant shoulder injury in Saturday’s loss to Arkansas. Head coach Jim McElwain said Del Rio is out indefinitely and should have been taken out at halftime against the Razorbacks. Purdue transfer Austin Appleby will try to rally Florida’s anemic offense against South Carolina.

Sean White, Auburn. The Tigers expect to have White at full strength for their critical game against Georgia on Saturday. White was sidelined in the first half of last week’s narrow win over Vanderbilt, but played the entire second half and completed 10 of 13 passes for 106 yards and a touchdown.

Running Backs

Nick Wilson, Arizona. Arizona’s injury nightmare continued this week, as Rich Rodriguez announced he doesn’t foresee Wilson returning this season. Wilson has been limited to five games this season with various injuries, including a recent ankle problem. The junior has been in and out of the lineup over the past two years after piling up 1,376 yards and 16 touchdowns in 2014.

Rushel Shell, West Virginia. The Mountaineers could get Shell back this Saturday for their road match-up with Texas. Head coach Dana Holgorsen said Shell will be a game-time decision after missing last week’s victory over Kansas with an ankle problem. Shell originally suffered the injury two weeks ago against Oklahoma State, the only loss of the season so far for West Virginia. 

Kamryn Pettway, Auburn. The SEC’s leading rusher is officially listed as day-to-day with a leg injury he sustained last week against Vanderbit. Pettway, who has 1,106 rushing yards this season, exited late against Vanderbilt and was unable to practice earlier in the week before returning to the field on Wednesday.  

Samaje Perine, Oklahoma. No. 9 Oklahoma is expecting to get a huge boost this weekend against Baylor with the return of Perine. The junior has missed Oklahoma’s last three games with a pulled muscle in his leg. Joe Mixon will also be back from suspension, giving the Sooners one of the best backfields in the country. 

Alvin Kamara, Tennessee. The Volunteers may finally be getting some positive injury news, as Kamara is a game-time decision on Saturday against Kentucky. Kamara suffered a knee injury on October 15 against Alabama and has not played since. The junior still leads the Volunteers in all-purpose yards as an effective running back, receiver and kick returner. 

Wide Receivers

Ray-Ray McCloud, Clemson. McCloud is listed as probable on Clemson’s injury report after missing last Saturday’s win over Syracuse with an ankle problem. Swinney said McCloud is looking near full strength in practice and could have played if the Tigers needed him against the Orange.

Francis Owusu, Stanford. Owusu has been in and out all season and remains questionable on Stanford’s injury report with an undisclosed problem despite playing last week against Oregon State. A concussion cost Owusu three games earlier in the season, and he has been limited to just five catches this season. The Cardinal offense needs all the help it can get, even against the Oregon defense on Saturday. 

Defensive Stars

Cameron Sutton, Tennessee. The Volunteers have really missed the star cornerback, who fractured his ankle on September 19 against Ohio. Head coach Butch Jones officially listed Sutton as a game-time decision against Kentucky. Despite everything that’s happened injury-wise, the Volunteers are very much alive in the SEC East race.

Tre Williams, Auburn. In addition to its two most important players on the offensive side of the ball, Auburn could get its top linebacker back on Saturday. Williams missed the Vanderbilt game after suffering an ankle injury two weeks ago against Ole Miss. Head coach Gus Malzahn seemed confident that Williams would be at full strength by Saturday. 

Marcus Edmond, Clemson. Like McCloud, the Tigers had the luxury of sitting Edmond against the Orange and expect to get him back this Saturday. Edmond suffered a toe injury against Florida State but has been removed from Clemson’s injury report entirely this week.

Cece Jefferson, Florida. Florida’s injury list continues to grow on both sides of the ball, with Jefferson joining the fray this week. The senior defensive end injured his foot against Arkansas and is listed as doubtful for Saturday, with McElwain saying the injury was worse than expected. 

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DeMarquis Gates, Ole Miss. Kelly wasn’t the only loss for Ole Miss last week, as Gates suffered a knee injury and is listed as questionable against Texas A&M. The linebacker is Ole Miss’ most productive defender with 64 tackles and four sacks this season.