Clemson will be without linebacker Jalen Williams for “a few weeks” after he suffered a sprained MCL on the first defensive possession of the team’s Thursday night game against Georgia Tech. The injury occurred when Williams was pursuing a quarterback out of bounds in the first quarter. He was helped off the field to the locker room and was later seen on crutches.
The linebacker did not return to the game.
Following the game, Clemson coach Dabo Swinney told reporters that Williams had been diagnosed with a sprained MCL and would miss a few weeks, though he is scheduled for a MRI Friday to develop a more definitive timetable for his return.
The sophomore has played in all four of the Tigers games so far in 2016 and, entering Thursday’s contest, was fifth on the team with 13 tackles. He played in all 15 games as a redshirt freshman in 2015 as well.
Williams was a three-star recruit in the 2014 class. He is officially listed as the team’s backup strong side linebacker.
The Tigers will face off against Louisville and quarterback Lamar Jackson in Week 5. The matchup will likely be a contest between two top five teams in the country. Entering Week 4, both ranked in the top five in both the Coaches and AP Polls. Clemson already notched a win against Georgia Tech on Thursday while Louisville will play Marshall on Saturday.
Clemson beat Georgia Tech by a score of 26-7 on Thursday behind a 304-yard passing performance from quarterback Deshaun Watson.