Oregon will be without its best player for the rest of its season-opening matchup against Fresno State.
Defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux was spotted on the sidelines wearing street clothes and with a walking boot on his left leg, signaling the end of his afternoon against the Bulldogs. DucksWire reported that Thibodeaux is out for the game after his ankle was rolled by a teammate late in the first quarter.
After the game, Oregon head coach Mario Cristobal said the team is optimistic the injury is not serious and noted that the X-rays came up negative, according to The Oregonian reporter James Crepea.
Cristobal: Kayvon Thibodeaux got “rolled up on” and it’s a sprain. Optimistic it’s not too serious. X-rays negative.
— James Crepea (@JamesCrepea) September 4, 2021
Thibodeaux has been widely regarded as one of the top 2022 NFL Draft prospects in the nation.
Thibodeaux had been making his presence felt early against Fresno State early as he recorded two tackles, a sack and a forced fumble.
DucksWire reported that Thibodeaux was able to play after the injury after he had his ankle taped up, but that he was ultimately pulled from the game.
The loss of Thibodeaux was immediately felt by the Ducks: Fresno State scored a touchdown with a 2-point conversion to tie the game early in the third quarter to tie the game at 21-21. It is unknown at this time how long Thibodeaux could be out. Oregon has its biggest clash of the season next week when it travels to Columbus to face No. 4 Ohio State.
This story will be updated with more information on Thibodeaux’s injury as it becomes available.