South Carolina officials announced Monday that senior cornerback Akeem Auguste and redshirt freshman running back Shon Carson will both be out indefinitely due to injuries. No offense to Carson, but the loss of Auguste — a starter — is the bigger concern for Gamecock fans.
Auguste suffered a torn muscle in his right thigh during a weekend scrimmage. He underwent a procedure Sunday afternoon and is expected to miss the first month of the season before being re-evaluated by doctors. Auguste missed most of last season with a foot injury.
Auguste had already been kept out of much of the Cocks’ fall camp with an injury in his groin area, but he was cleared to return on Friday. Then on Saturday he aggravated the injury, leading to the “procedure.”
For Carolina, the secondary had only one returning starter — senior safety DJ Swearinger — entering camp. With Auguste out of commission, new defensive coordinator Lorenzo Ward will have to rely on youngsters and inexperienced upperclassmen to fill the slots around Swearinger.
Next Thursday in Nashville, Vanderbilt quarterback Jordan Rodgers will most definitely try to exploit what on paper looks to be the Gamecocks’ biggest defensive weakness. That makes the pass rush provided by guys like Jadeveon Clowney all the more important to protect the back end of Carolina’s defense.
As for Carson, he underwent surgery on his left wrist. But Marcus Lattimore and Kenny Miles are 1-2 on Steve Spurrier’s depth chart. That injury — while unfortunate — the Cocks can afford. The one to Auguste? A much bigger deal.