USC head coach Lincoln Riley said he does not expect starting running back Travis Dye to play again this season after the senior suffered an apparent lower leg injury in Friday night’s 55-17 win over Colorado.
Dye was carted off the field after his left leg appeared to get twisted underneath him in the second quarter as he was tackled by Colorado defenders on a carry.
Dye stayed down on the field, was placed in an air cast and eventually lifted onto a cart. The entire USC team crowded around Dye as he left the field.
“I told him I love him and we were going to finish this for him,” quarterback Caleb Williams said he told Dye as he was carted off the field.
Said Riley: “It’s tough. It shook us all a little bit. He’s such an emotional leader. It sucks. No other way to put it.”
The Trojans did not have any further details on Dye’s injury after the game.
Dye had 26 yards on nine carries Friday night, giving him 884 rushing yards this season, second-best in the Pac-12. He also is averaging 6.1 yards per carry and has nine touchdowns.
Losing Dye would be a huge blow for the No. 8 Trojans (9-1, 7-1 Pac-12). After transferring from Oregon to USC this offseason, he has become a linchpin of not just the offense but the team as a whole. A senior, he has earned a spot as one of USC’s captains and has been a strong voice on the team.
Dye’s consistency has set the tone in Lincoln Riley’s offense, especially when the passing game has sputtered. He has five games of 100 rushing yards or more this season.
If Dye is set to miss extended time, USC will have to turn to another transfer, Austin Jones from Stanford, as well as freshman Raleek Brown. Jones had 74 yards on 11 carries to lead the team Friday night, while Brown had 52 yards on seven carries.