Indiana wide receiver D.J. Matthews is out for the season with a torn ACL head coach Tom Allen said on Monday morning.
“D.J. Matthews has torn his ACL, so he will be out for the season,” Allen said. “It’s a tough, tough blow for us and for him. I hurt for him. He’s had an amazing attitude, even the night it happened. We weren’t 100% sure at that time, but it was confirmed yesterday (Sunday).”
Playing in his first season at Indiana, Matthews caught 13 passes for 165 yards in four games, and added two carries for 28 yards and a touchdown. He also returned four punts for 83 yards including a 79-yard touchdown.
Matthews transferred to IU from Florida State during the offseason. Allen said Matthews is eligible for a redshirt season and thus can return to Indiana in 2021.
Outside receivers Ty Fryfogle and Miles Marshall saw action in the slot after Matthews was injured. Both will continue to be options at the inside position going forward. According to Allen, Jacolby Hewitt, Malachi Holt-Bennett and Jordyn Williams are three receivers who are likely to see elevated roles in Matthews’ absence. David Ellis was also injured on Saturday night, and his status for this week is still uncertain according to Allen.
“Jacolby Hewitt is a guy I see continue to grow, be more involved. Expect him to, want him to, Allen said.
“When you say younger guys, Malachi Holt-Bennett is a young man that has shown really good flashing throughout fall camp. He’s a true freshman. Jordyn Williams. Those guys are probably going to be the two that we’ll look to to be able to give us some more depth at that position.
“We have a lot of guys that are older that will still be very, very involved. To ask about the younger guys, those are two that come to my mind. I expect them to be able to have some practice opportunities for sure, then we’ll kind of see how they respond to that.
“Still have a lot of talent in that room. It’s like anything else, it’s tough for D.J. We’ve had this happen with other players in the past, last year, the year before. It does create an opportunity for somebody else. That’s part of life. You have to be able to, when called upon, rise up and seize the day.”
Matthews was also splitting punt returns with Reese Taylor. Allen said those duties will now fall back fully to Taylor.
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