College Sports

No injury update on Rico Dowdle, but another Gamecocks back is ailing

South Carolina’s Will Muschamp wasn’t able to deliver much news Sunday on injured tailback Rico Dowdle.

But one of the options to replace him, A.J. Turner, is battling an injury of his own.

Muschamp said Dowdle had an MRI on Sunday afternoon, but he didn’t have the results back yet. The coach then added Turner was bothered by his hamstring early in the game Saturday and he wasn’t able to keep playing after that.

“Once I know something, we’ll update you,” Muschamp said of Dowdle.

Dowdle left Saturday’s game against the Florida Gators after his first carry. He went to the locker room and returned with a knee brace. He was on the sideline throughout the rainy loss.

Dowdle is USC’s second-leading rusher with 457 yards and four touchdowns on 78 carries. He was the top rusher until this week when Tavien Feaster posted a career high 175 yards.

Mon Denson is the team’s next tailback, followed by Turner, who spent the first half of the season on defense and is an ace special-teamer.

Turner was a starter at running back as a redshirt freshman in 2016 and has always seemed to find his way into a prominent backfield role. He was USC’s second-leading rusher that year, leading rusher in 2017 and fourth-leading rusher after battling a concussion in 2018.

At the end of the season, he started dabbling on defense, and as the team went away from a more balanced running load under assistant coach Thomas Brown, Turner became primarily a defensive player. He was a reserve through the start of this season, and Muschamp said Saturday that Turner moved back to offense a few weeks ago.

The Gamecocks delivered their third game with 215 or more rushing yards this season.

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