By Parrish Alford/NEMS Daily Journal
OXFORD – Kentrell Lockett, elected an Ole Miss captain earlier this week, will miss the team’s season opener Saturday and will remain sidelined indefinitely because of what is being termed a “rhythmic” heart condition.
Lockett left the Rebels’ Saturday practice early and was in Memphis for testing on Monday. On Tuesday he was sent to the Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio for further testing that will continue through this week.
“He’s up there to let the bests look at him,” Ole Miss trainer Tim Mullins said.
Mullins described Lockett as presently “stable,” but when or if he returns is unclear.
“Like with all of our athletes, their health and safety is the No. 1 thing. We’re going to make sure he’s OK,” Mullins said.
Lockett had an issue with his heart two years ago, but this is unrelated, Mullins said.
Lockett is the lone experienced end on a defensive line that has been billed as one of the best in the country. He had 10 tackles-for-loss, five sacks and 13 quarterback pressures last year.
Third-year sophomore Gerald Rivers, 15 pounds lighter at 245, will start Saturday against Jacksonville State.
Ole Miss coach Houston Nutt called it a “big blow” and said end play on Lockett’s side, the left, will be done by committee.
Junior college transfer Wayne Dorsey is the starter on the right side.