Ameer Abdullah finished the 2012 Nebraska season with 1,137 yards and eight scores in splitting carries with Rex Burkhead, as well as shouldering the full load when their leader went down with injuries. He proved to be a workhorse in his sophomore season and is expected to pile up even bigger numbers with Burkhead off to the NFL.
However, fans, coaches and even Abdullah himself will have to wait on that after the running back sustained a knee injury during spring practices.
Nebraska coach Bo Pelini told reporters on Monday that Abdullah “tweaked” his knee and should be fine. However, the injury will keep him out for several weeks and, in all likelihood, will make him a no-go for the team’s Spring Game, scheduled for April 6.
Burkhead’s injury was a sprained MCL, and Huskers fans everywhere must have groaned when Pelini said that Abdullah’s recent injury was similar. However, the coach stressed that it was “to a lesser degree”
Pelini and his staff would be wise to take extreme caution with Abdullah. Not to say the young is fragile, however. Rather, the Huskers do not have very much depth at the position behind him.
Imani Cross enters the 2013 season as Abdullah’s primary backup and is gunning for more serious playing time. Behind him, however, Braylon Heard transferred and the rest of the guys boast virtually zero in-game experience.
For a team looking to improve upon last season’s 10 wins and a trip to the Big Ten title game, having every weapon available is going to be of the utmost importance.