Thanks to what transpired in 2013, Utah State and its fan are rather cognizant of any type of injury scare when it comes to Chuckie Keeton.
Fortunately for USU and its followers, this latest one’s just that, a scare. Probably.
In the first half of USU’s win over Wake Forest Saturday, Keeton suffered an injury to his left knee — the same knee in which significant ligaments were torn asunder last year. While the quarterback finished out the half, he didn’t play the last two quarters because of the issue and instead spent the second half on the sidelines and on crutches.
The bad news is Keeton will not play in this weekend’s game against Arkansas State. The good news? Following the bye in Week 5, Keeton is expected to be back for the Oct. 3 game against BYU. Maybe.
“Chuckie is fine from a health standpoint,” head coach Matt Wells said. “The ACL is all intact; everything’s good. But it’s banged up, guys, and that’s the bottom line.
“So, we’re going to sit him out this week, and we’re going to sit him out next week. Then we’re going to re-evaluate him during the BYU week.”
In the first half of the game against the Demon Deacons, Keeton was 20-of-27 for 166 yards passing and a touchdown. And it won’t be his last on-field action as Wells was emphatic that “he’s not out for the year.”
With Keeton out for the ASU game at bare minimum, though, Darrell Garretson will get the start. After replacing Keeton in the road win over the ACC school, Garretson completed 11-of-16 passes for 121 yards with a touchdown and an interception.
The fact that USU may be erring on the side of caution when it comes to one of the most underrated players in the country is not the least bit surprising.
Keeton suffered a tear of both the ACL and MCL in his knee during an early-October loss to BYU last season and was held out of the 15 spring practice sessions as a precaution. In May, just four months ago, Keeton was medically cleared to resume football activities seven months after the injury.