South Carolina Football: Freshman DB tears ACL in spring practice

South Carolina football freshman defensive back Zahbari Sandy tore his ACL and is expected to miss the entire 2024 season.
South Carolina football helmet
South Carolina football helmet / Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

South Carolina football is finishing up spring practice this week, and the annual Garnet and Black Spring Game will be the culminating moment of the spring. The game will be under the lights at Williams-Brice Stadium on Saturday, April 20th and will begin at 7:00 PM EST.

Several notable pieces of news have dropped during spring practice. Kelton Henderson was dismissed from the team for unspecified reasons, the Gamecocks secured four commitments (three of whom have already been announced as 4-star receiver Brian Rowe, 4-star EDGE Anthony Addison, and in-state safety Damarcus Leach), graduate student Jaxon Hughes hit the transfer portal, and USC warded off an attempted assistant coach poaching job.

For the most part, injuries have not been a major factor this spring for South Carolina football. Running back Juju McDowell re-injured his collarbone but will be back during the summer, and several other players are dealing with some minor injuries that shouldn't keep them out long.

However, during South Carolina football coach Shane Beamer's Tuesday press conference, the head Gamecock announced that the team suffered a serious injury to a young reserve. Redshirt freshman defensive back Zahbari Sandy tore his ACL during the team's intra-squad scrimmage last weekend.

Sandy was part of the class of 2023 and redshirted last year. He was hoping to carve out a special teams role this season and fight for some depth snaps in the secondary, but according to Beamer, Sandy won't be able to do that because it is "doubtful" he will be able to return before the season ends. Most ACL tears take a significant amount of time to heal, so it is in the best interest of Sandy for him to be able to take his time through his rehab so that he can be ready for 2025.

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