Liberty began this past weekends game at Rutgers without Brandon Tillmon occupying one of the starting linebacker spots. The contest ended with several players going down with injuries, which will force the Flames to test their depth Saturday at UMass.
Depth is going to be a factor, Flames coach Hugh Freeze said Monday. Were going to have to get our two-deep ready with kids that havent played a lot of snaps this year. Then hopefully by Saturday, some of these that are on the day-to-day list will be able to be added bonuses to us.
Tillmon and fellow starting linebacker Solomon Ajayi both were listed as day-to-day on the injury report. Ajayi was injured late in the first half against the Scarlet Knights but returned and played the majority of the second half.
He was sporting a walking boot on his left foot leaving the stadium.
Tillmon suffered a small fracture in his right foot early in the Flames Oct. 5 victory at New Mexico State. He played against Maine two weeks later but was unable to go against the Scarlet Knights.
The injuries will necessitate more reps in practice for Amarii Jenkins, Tyren Dupree, Waylen Cozad and Malik Caper.
Jenkins, a redshirt sophomore, made the second start of his career against Rutgers in place of Tillmon at Will linebacker.
Brandon being the great player that he is, making the plays that youve seen in the past couple of games, it was a huge loss, Jenkins said Monday. Hopefully he gets better so he can help out the defense a lot for the rest of the season.
Dupree, a redshirt freshman, has served as Ajayis backup this season with seven appearances and posted a career-high six tackles against Rutgers. Cozad, the junior college transfer, started against Louisiana on Sept. 7 and finished with a season-high nine stops against the Scarlet Knights.
Caper, a true freshman, has played in two games this season and can play in two more while retaining his year of eligibility. He traveled with the team to Rutgers.
With those two being kind of banged up, [linebackers coach Kyle] Pope is going to make sure he does his best to get the rest of us ready, Jenkins said. Were kind of young and inexperienced. Its not an excuse for being able to step up and take in a role that needs to be taken when somebody goes in.
The injuries werent limited to just the linebacker corps.
Free safety JaVon Scruggs and defensive end Austin Lewis, both sophomores, are in concussion protocol.
Scruggs, the Appomattox County High product who posted a career-high 10 tackles against Rutgers, was hit on one of the Flames two onside kick attempts.
He took a vicious hit on that onside kick, which was not a clean play, Freeze said.
That means Isaac Steele, who only played on special teams against Rutgers until Scruggs injury late in the fourth quarter, will receive most of the first-team reps at the position.
Micah Glaize and Benjamin Alexander will serve as Elijah Bentons backups at rover.
Lewis was one of three defensive ends to see consistent playing time against Rutgers in the first half, and his absence forced Jessie Lemonier and TreShaun Clark to play the majority of the second-half snaps.
Freeze added he wants to prevent nose guard Ralfs Rusins from playing as many snaps as he did against Rutgers, which could mean a larger role for Elisha Mitchell.
The good thing is well be able to present to our defense exactly what they want to see because it is a mirror image of who we are, Freeze said of preparing for UMass offense. Its identical. The same RPOs, the same runs, the same sets. They may go a little bit more two-by-two spread than we do, but thats typically when theyve gotten behind a bit that they go to that. If they can stay in the game, they stay in their comfort zone, which is the RPO world.
NOTE: Libertys Nov. 9 matchup against BYU is scheduled for a 7:30 p.m. EST kickoff at LaVell Edwards Stadium in Provo, Utah. The game will be televised on ESPNU.
Damien Sordelett covers Liberty University athletics and local golf for The News & Advance. Reach him at (434) 385-5550.
Damien Sordelett covers Liberty University athletics and local golf for The News & Advance. Reach him at (434) 385-5550.
- Liberty London | Designer Department Store | Luxury Brands ... - January 5th, 2020
- Sale | Liberty London Sale | Liberty London - January 5th, 2020
- Liberty's defense stifles NJIT, 65-38 - WSET - January 5th, 2020
- Liberty boys basketball doesnt beat buzzer, but does beat Whitehall in OT - lehighvalleylive.com - January 5th, 2020
- New York Liberty to reveal new head coach on Wednesday morning - Elite Sports NY - January 5th, 2020
- Liberty Mutual Insurance Selected by Uber to Cover Drivers in New England, South Carolina and Puerto Rico - PRNewswire - January 5th, 2020
- Liberty Women To Open New Year with Meets At Florida, FGCU - SwimSwam - January 5th, 2020
- Liberty Vittert: Got a resolution for the New Year? Here's a statistician's advice on how to keep it - Fox Business - January 5th, 2020
- Liberty Hill woman accused of beating that sent son to hospital - Austin American-Statesman - January 5th, 2020
- Liberty, Equality, and Identity - The Bulwark - January 5th, 2020
- Josh Richardson and others are right to call out Sixers' effort - Liberty Ballers - January 5th, 2020
- This Week in Mid-Major: Liberty takes a page from UVa's playbook, Bryant's shot-swatter, the top 10 and more - The Athletic - January 5th, 2020
- YEAR END: Liberty County baseball coach and wife electrocuted, son injured at baseball field - The News Herald - January 5th, 2020
- Patriots hook up Navy Football with nice transportation to Liberty Bowl - 98.5 The Sports Hub - December 26th, 2019
- Stephen Calvert, Liberty Top Georgia Southern 23-16 to Win 2019 Cure Bowl - Bleacher Report - December 26th, 2019
- Donald Trump, Jerry Falwell Jr., and Liberty Universitys Football Vision - The Ringer - December 26th, 2019
- Akron faces Liberty in Washington - WVVA TV - December 26th, 2019
- Liberty Media Floated the Idea of Buying IndyCar Alongside its F1 Acquisition - Essentially Sports - December 26th, 2019
- Anker Soundcore Liberty 2 and 2 Pro true wireless buds are down to $60 and $110 ($40 off) - Android Police - December 26th, 2019
- Diventures' new 60-foot-pool in North Liberty is heated and ready for scuba divers in training - The Gazette - December 26th, 2019
- Liberty and the Birth of Jesus Go Hand in Hand - Liberty Nation - December 26th, 2019
- Liberty family seeks justice after 'targeted attack' of their dog in its own back yard - WYFF4 Greenville - December 26th, 2019
- 820 Liberty Avenue went from yow to wow creating four large lofts in an extensive renovation - NEXTpittsburgh - December 26th, 2019
- Kiggins, Liberty theaters strive for creativity - Columbian.com - The Columbian - December 26th, 2019
- Watch the parade for the 61st AutoZone Liberty Bowl on Local 24! - WATN - Local 24 - December 26th, 2019
- Soundcore Liberty 2 Pro review: The best-sounding earbuds of 2019 [Video] - 9to5Google - December 26th, 2019
- Dem Voters Caught Between the Geriatrics and Socialist Swampsters - Liberty Nation - December 26th, 2019
- Games to Watch This Weekend for Liberty's Bowl Hopes (11/26 edition) - A Sea of Red - November 27th, 2019
- Heather Stearns of Tallahassee, Florida, Has Recently Been Appointed President of LIBERTY Dental Plan of Florida, Inc. - Business Wire - November 27th, 2019
- PHOTOS: Umbrellas, Tables, and Seating Appear at Liberty Square... - wdwnt.com - November 27th, 2019
- Newark Liberty International Airport is Actually in Elizabeth, NJ- (County of Union) Now the Destination is Visible to Passengers - Yahoo Finance - November 27th, 2019
- Liberty vs. Morgan State odds: 2019 The Islands of the Bahamas Showcase picks, predictions from proven model - CBS Sports - November 27th, 2019
- Liberty defeats UMKC to win the Islands of the Bahamas Showcase - A Sea of Red - November 27th, 2019
- The Liberty Foundation Awards $422,000 to 18 Nonprofit Organizations | Business Gallery - The Weekly Journal - November 27th, 2019
- Liberty Science Center's Inaugural Genius of New Jersey to Honor Innovators Who Make the State a World Leader in Cutting-Edge Applied Science -... - November 27th, 2019
- Sixty minutes for 60 more: Liberty focuses on final chance to become bowl eligible - Lynchburg News and Advance - November 27th, 2019
- What to Be Thankful For | Cato @ Liberty - Cato Institute - November 27th, 2019
- Liberty's John Malone sees HBO losing out in the streaming wars - CNBC - November 27th, 2019
- Count liberty among our blessings this Thanksgiving - cleveland.com - November 27th, 2019
- Liberty CEO sees Sirius well positioned in audio boom with exclusive content like Howard Stern - CNBC - November 27th, 2019
- Liberty Securities Selects Broadridge to Simplify Post-Trade Processing for Hong Kong Equities and Derivatives - Bobsguide - November 27th, 2019
- The 'cautionary tale' of Liberty University - The College Fix - October 29th, 2019
- Phase 1 of new signage in Liberty completed - Times Herald-Record - October 29th, 2019
- Boyd Matheson: Liberty without morality and religious freedom is but window dressing - Deseret News - October 29th, 2019
- Rutgers Million-Dollar Guarantee To Liberty Proved To Be A Wise Investment - Forbes - October 29th, 2019
- Washington-Liberty QB Andrew Bolfek throws 6 TDs to win Player of the Week - WTOP - October 29th, 2019
- In the region: No. 6 UVa field hockey tops No. 17 Liberty - Lynchburg News and Advance - October 29th, 2019
- TSA: Man Tried To Bring Loaded Gun On Plane At Newark Liberty International Airport - CBS Pittsburgh - October 29th, 2019
- If You Had Bought One Liberty Properties (NYSE:OLP) Shares Five Years Ago Youd Have Made 23% - Simply Wall St - October 29th, 2019
- LTE: The Il-liberty of Protest - The Daily Northwestern - October 29th, 2019
- Liberty Apartments in south Cape still set to open in April - Southeast Missourian - October 29th, 2019
- Intrepid Theatre returns with 'The Thousandth Night' at Liberty Station - The San Diego Union-Tribune - October 29th, 2019
- Rutgers won its 2nd game this year by defeating Liberty | What did visiting recruits think? - NJ.com - October 29th, 2019
- Visit the Statue of Liberty, feel her unifying message | Opinion - NJ.com - October 29th, 2019
- Liberty Health Sciences Announces Opening Of 19th Florida Dispensary In Pensacola; Second Panhandle Location - Yahoo Finance - October 24th, 2019
- Liberty adds UConn to 2020 football schedule, moves UVa game to 2023 - Lynchburg News and Advance - October 24th, 2019
- Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are not in US Constitution - Call Newspapers - October 24th, 2019
- British government notes 'deterioration' of religious liberty in several countries - Crux: Covering all things Catholic - October 24th, 2019
- What are the odds? Liberty twin has twin daughters born on his birthday - WDAF FOX4 Kansas City - October 24th, 2019
- Liberty Development partnering with St. Clement Church in Lakewood to build Madison Avenue townhomes - cleveland.com - October 24th, 2019
- Falwell threatens to sue journalist behind explosive report, demands retraction - Lynchburg News and Advance - October 24th, 2019
- G Adventures and Liberty Travel Form Preferred Partnership - TravelPulse - October 24th, 2019
- Rutgers Scarlet Knights Football is set to welcome the Liberty Flames to town -- B1G Football - Rivals.com - October 24th, 2019
- Her Immigrant Story: 'Mother Of Exiles' Documentary Reveals Statue Of Liberty's Little-Known History - Women You Should Know - October 24th, 2019
- Religious Liberty Leaders Emphasize Connecting With the Marginalized - Adventist Review - October 24th, 2019
- Is Liberty Property Trust (LPT) Going to Burn These Hedge Funds? - Yahoo Finance - October 24th, 2019
- Slavery and liberty: A new exhibit explores the Thomas Jefferson paradox - Archinect - October 24th, 2019
- Hate LAX? Why New York's Newark Liberty International Airport is a relative breeze - Stuff.co.nz - October 24th, 2019
- Liberty Ranch FFA students show children where their food comes from - The Galt Herald - October 24th, 2019
- Trenton Catholic boys soccer earns share of BCSL Liberty crown - The Trentonian - October 24th, 2019
- Letter to the Editor Liberty or Tyranny | Letters To The Editor - Richfield Reaper - October 24th, 2019
- Former Liberty-Eylau coach accused of sexual misconduct with students - TXK Today - October 24th, 2019
- Liberty Health Sciences Appoints George Gremse To The Board Of Directors - PRNewswire - October 16th, 2019
- ZOM Senior Living, in a venture with Liberty Senior Living and funds managed by Ares Management Corporation's Real Estate Group, announces... - October 16th, 2019
- EAST LIBERTY DEVELOPMENT: Vote Wednesday could help clear way for controversial $50 million project in East Liberty - WPXI Pittsburgh - October 16th, 2019
- Take A Look! | Black Bear Spotted Swimming In Liberty Reservoir - CBS Baltimore - October 16th, 2019
- Religious Liberty, Nondiscrimination, and the Left - National Review - October 16th, 2019
- 'Citizens for Liberty and Labor' PAC drops another $40K against Woodward's campaign - KXLY Spokane - October 16th, 2019
- Kelvin Edwards honored to have his jersey retired at Liberty - Lynchburg News and Advance - October 16th, 2019
- Liberty City and Brownville will not rise | Letters to the Editor - The Miami Times - October 16th, 2019