BLOG: Ole Miss football coach Houston Nutt talked about losing junior linebacker D.T. Shackelford to a torn anterior cruciate ligament during Monday’s practice.Shackelford will undergo surgery to repair his injured right knee within two weeks and is expected to miss between six to eight months. Losing a player of Shackelford’s ability is a blow to a defense that is already thin on depth and trying to improve as a unit following a 4-8 season.
“Defensively we are thin right now. There are more on the sidelines than we would like. (Shackleford) is a tremendous, tremendous leader and he will continue to be so,” Nutt said following Tuesday’s spring practice session. “It hurts, it hurts a lot because he was so good. He gets people lined up, he’s smart with experience. He just took over from Jan. 10th on, he took over. We need somebody to take over that slot.”
Nutt talked about the next step in replacing Shackelford and added it was an opportunity for younger members to see more action.
“The think about this game there is always an opportunity. You’re a play away. Sometimes players don’t believe that. We’re at a point right now where it’s hard for us to say next,” Nutt said. “It’s a building process and we want to get to the point where we can say next and we’re not quite there. We’re going to have depend on some freshmen coming in. They’re going to have to play. You would like to redshirt them, but they’ll have to play.” (April 12, 2011)