Auburn, Ala. (EETV) – Auburn’s injury troubles in the secondary continue, as it was announced Monday that starting star/nickel and punt returner Keionte Scott will be out indefinitely with an ankle injury that will require surgery.
Scott was hurt in the Tigers’ game against Samford this past weekend, a game which Auburn won 45-13. However, with Scott’s injury mounting on top of injuries to starting cornerback Nehemiah Pritchett and Scott’s backup at the star position, Donovan Kaufman, concern about the Auburn defensive backfield is high.
“Unfortunately, Keionte did not get a good report,” Coach Hugh Freeze said. “That hurts us a lot. He’s our leader back there. It hasn’t been a good year for us with injuries. Our prayers are with him for a quick healing for sure. We’ll be without him for considerable time.”
Kaufman has been practicing this week, but has been wearing the yellow non-contact jersey and is still limited. Pritchett has also been a full participant in practice this week. However, Pritchett was a participant the week before the Samford game, dressed out, and then changed back into sweats and was unable to play.
Also in this week’s practices, corner J.D. Rhym, who had his first career interception vs Samford, has been practicing with the stars/nickels and safeties rather than his usual position group, as it appears the Tigers are trying to shore up depth at the star position with Scott and Kaufman both out.
With Scott out, as well as the uncertainty around Pritchett and Kaufman, players such as Rhym, Jack safety Jalen McLeod, and Jaylin Simpson, who has an interception in each of his last three games, will need to continue to step up for Auburn as they begin SEC play this weekend against Texas A&M in College Station.