STARKVILLE — Mississippi State junior right guard Tobias Smith will miss the remainder of the 2011 football season after injuring his left knee Thursday night in a 19-6 loss to No. 3 LSU at Davis Wade Stadium.
Smith, who has a history of leg and ankle injuries in his first two seasons with the Bulldogs, suffered a left knee injury after MSU”s third-down effort that resulted in a 4-yard run by senior quarterback Chris Relf.
Smith needed to be helped off the field after the play and didn”t return. MSU officials confirmed in the second quarter Smith was done for the remainder of the game.
MSU football spokesman Joe Galbraith confirmed Friday on his Twitter account that Smith would be sidelined for the remainder of the 2011 campaign with a knee injury, but he didn”t specify any details about the nature of the injury.
Paul Jones of MSU”s 247Sports.com site reported Friday that Smith”s injury includes partial tears of all three ligaments (ACL, MCL, LCL) in his left knee.
“One thing (MSU offensive line coach John) Hevesy tells us all the time is you got to be ready when your number was called,” redshirt freshman Blaine Clausell said Thursday. “Tonight was just one of those nights.”
Smith, a former Columbus High School standout, has played in only 15 games since arriving in Starkville in 2008. He was ranked the 34th best offensive guard prospect in the country during his senior season with the Falcons. He also was the No. 9 offensive lineman in the state of Mississippi, according to Rivals.com.
Smith was spotted on the bench with a towel over his head and using crutches to get off the field after the loss to LSU.
When Smith exited the game, senior center Quentin Saulsberry moved to right guard and redshirt freshman Dillon Day took over at center. The addition of Day and Clausell, who made his first college start in place of the injured James Carmon (knee), represented 40 percent of the projected starting offensive line out by the first month of the season.
“It didn”t help that”s for sure,” Mullen said when asked how the injuries to key offensive lineman affected the outcome of the game.
Galbraith also tweeted all other MSU players are expected to be available next Saturday for the game against Louisiana Tech (6 p.m., ESPNU), but it remains unknown if Carmon will be ready. Carmon was injured in MSU”s 41-34 loss to Auburn on Sept. 10. He didn”t practice in the days leading up to the contest against No. 3 LSU, and wasn”t on MSU”s active roster Thursday night.
Carmon used his Twitter account earlier this week to announce he was sidelined for the next few weeks.