OXFORD – Ole Miss defensive end Kentrell Lockett, it appears, overcame the uncertainty of an irregular heartbeat only to have his season ended with a torn ACL.
Ole Miss coach Houston Nutt said it was “not for sure” that Lockett tore his ACL, but went on to say it sure looks that way.
Lockett, the Rebels’ senior captain, who led the team in quarterback pressures last year with 13, laid motionless on the field with 9 minutes, 56 seconds left in the first quarter Saturday night.
Visiting Fresno State had just gained 1 yard on a screen pass that went away from Lockett’s side of the field.
He was involved in the pass rush against Fresno quarterback Ryan Colburn, however. Lockett was assisted by the Ole Miss training staff on the field, and in the second half he was on the Rebels’ bench in a jersey and shorts, resting his knee on crutches.
Lockett’s heart concerns kept him out of the season opener against Jacksonville State. He played against Tulane and Vanderbilt and had totaled six tackles, a tackle-for-loss, a sack and two pressures going into Saturday’s game.
He is a candidate for a medical redshirt and could possibly return for the 2011 season. A decision on that won’t be made until some time in the future.
In Lockett’s absence there was more playing time for third-year sophomore Gerald Rivers, who started the Jacksonville State game.
Linebacker D.T. Shackelford, who has played end in special situations, also got more playing time as the Fresno State game wore on.
The Rebels gave up 390 passing yards and four touchdowns to Colburn, but also sacked him five times and hurried him many others.
PARRISH ALFORD / NEMS Daily Journal