Multiple key players for respected state-school powers suffered season-ending injuries on their first plays Saturday. Florida’s Dre Massey became the latest to be diagnosed with a torn ACL, and the Gators wide receiver will not return this season, Kevin McGuire of College Football Talk reports.
While Wisconsin starting inside linebacker Chris Orr suffered his season-ending ACL tear on his first play against LSU in Week 1, Massey sustained his on the opening kickoff. Although the junior college transfer attempted to play through it, obviously before knowing the extent of the injury, Massey did not return to the field against the Minutemen for the second half and won’t have a chance to return until the 2017 season opener.
“A big loss. We’re going to need some guys step up,” Florida coach Jim McElwain said. “He’ll get that operated on here when the swelling goes down.”
A 5-foot-9, 180-pound junior, Massey served as a multipurpose talent during his sophomore season at Holmes (Miss.) Community College. He gained 548 receiving yards on just 21 receptions and paired that aerial production with a 59-carry, 452-yard rushing line, compiling these figures in just nine games to attract interest of Division I powers.
Oklahoma, Auburn and Virginia Tech made plays for the shifty transfer player, one who should be in line to receive a medical-hardship season and regain his junior year of eligibility. As a high school talent, Massey served as a dual-threat quarterback, accounting for a freakish 62 touchdowns — rushing for 34 and gaining 2,050 yards — as a senior in 2013 before transitioning to a pass-catching role.