UConn football head coach Randy Edsall announced that running back Donevin O’Reilly is out for the season after tearing his ACL in practice.
The tear is in his left knee and he will undergo surgery on Friday.
“That’s the stuff as a coach that you just say ‘Why?’,” Edsall said. “That kid put so much into it, he worked so hard, he was really the number one tailback. To see him go down, I just feel for him.”
O’Reilly impressed the coaching staff enough as a walk-on to earn a scholarship this season. He stood out in the spring game with 130 rushing yards, 49 receiving yards and three total touchdowns. That momentum carried into fall camp where he was earning time with the first-string offense.
UConn’s depth at running back is now even thinner with O’Reilly injured and Nate Hopkins quitting the team. Kevin Mensah will likely serve as the starter with Zavier Scott holding down the third down/passing back role. True freshmen Dante Black and Khyon Gillespie will also have to contribute right away as the only other running backs on the roster.
“There’s one less guy,” Edsall said on the depth at the position. “All the young kids and everyone else have to be ready to play.”