LSU’s Beckwith is injured, won’t play against Auburn

BATON ROUGE, La. – LSU coach Les Miles avoided describing the type of injury middle linebacker Darry Beckwith suffered in Saturday night’s 41-3 victory over North Texas, but didn’t dodge the fact that the Tiger senior will be shelved for a period of time.

“It’s safe to say he won’t be available to us this week,” Miles said during his Sunday media briefing at the LSU Football Complex. “I think he’ll be back soon, though.”

Miles wouldn’t go into the type of injury Beckwith suffered late in the first quarter, though it was reported on LSU’s radio broadcast that it was his left knee. Beckwith went into the LSU locker room for an in-game MRI, during which, Miles said, “They saw something.”

Still, the LSU coach remained optimistic.

“We’ll get him back,” Miles said. When asked if that might be before or after LSU’s Oct. 4 open date, Miles replied: “Before the open date is possible, if not probable.”

A preseason All-SEC selection, Beckwith is essentially the quarterback of LSU’s front seven defenders. His departure from Saturday’s game admittedly led to some moments of confusion for the Tiger defense, Miles said.

Junior Jacob Cutrera filled in for Beckwith most of the game and will likely start Saturday (6:45 p.m., ESPN) when No. 6-ranked LSU (2-0) goes on the road to face No. 9 Auburn (3-0, 1-0 SEC). Cutrera will be spelled by starting weakside linebacker Kelvin Sheppard when Sheppard’s spot is eliminated by five- or six-defensive back situations.

Miles said Cutrera played well in Beckwith’s place, but that the senior will be missed.

“You can’t measure leadership,” said Miles, who added that true freshmen linebackers Kyle Prater and Kellen Theriot stood a better chance of seeing playing time with Beckwith sidelined.

Other injuries

 

Miles downplayed LSU’s other injuries from Saturday – wide receiver Demetrius Byrd sprained an ankle just before halftime and didn’t return, cornerback Patrick Peterson bruised a shoulder. He also said there is a “strong chance” backup free safety and starting nickel back Danny McCray will see action. McCray sat out the North Texas game after suffering an ankle injury in LSU’s opener against Appalachian State.

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