South Carolina football coach Shane Beamer gives injury updates ahead of Arkansas game – Greenville News

  • September 9, 2022

COLUMBIA — There’s good news and bad news for South Carolina football’s injuries heading into the Gamecocks’ first SEC game of the season against Arkansas. 
After sitting out the opener against Georgia State with an ankle/foot injury, coach Shane Beamer said transfer running back Christian Beal-Smith will play in Fayetteville on Saturday (noon, ESPN). Beal-Smith played the last four seasons at Wake Forest and has logged 1,871 career rushing yards.
Based on the Gamecocks’ depth chart, Beal-Smith could start in place of sophomore Juju McDowell against the Razorbacks. McDowell rushed for just 14 yards on seven carries in the season opener against Georgia State.
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Punter Kai Kroeger, who was dealing with a foot injury during much of training camp, is cleared to play again this week. Against Georgia State, he hit a 79-yard punt that earned him Ray Guy National Punter of the Week honors. Kroeger is also expected to resume his duties as placeholder, which freshman William Joyce took over last week.
Beamer said wide receiver Corey Rucker will be out for at least one more week with an undisclosed injury. Rucker is a junior transfer from Arkansas State and was a second-team All-Sun Belt selection in 2021.
The other question mark for the Gamecocks is senior safety RJ Roderick, who left the game during the first drive against Georgia State with an arm injury. Beamer said there is no decision yet on whether he will be cleared for Saturday.
If Roderick is ruled out, true freshman Nick Emmanwori is expected to earn his first career start, and fellow freshman DQ Smith is also likely to rotate in. Emmanwori recorded three solo tackles and a pass breakup is his college debut last week, and Smith returned a blocked punt for a touchdown on top of his two solo tackles.
Contact Emily Adams at [email protected] or on Twitter @eaadams6.


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