CHAMPAIGN (WCIA) — Illinois offensive lineman Jordyn Slaughter broke his ankle at practice on Wednesday and after having surgery, is likely out for the season, according to Illini head coach Bret Bielema. Slaughter posted a picture of him at the hospital on Twitter, sharing the news.
“I still don’t understand God’s intentions for my life other than this period of trials and tribulations,” Slaughter said in the post. “I won’t let this break my love for this game. I’ll be back.”
The redshirt sophomore from Belleville was competing for a starting spot at right guard. Slaughter had impressed Bielema and Illinois strength coach Tank Wright with his work in spring ball and this summer.
“Tank and I had talked about him repeatedly throughout the summer about the progress that he had made,” Bielema said on Thursday. “He had had a really good start to camp. Obviously, he was competing inside for an interior guard position. And unfortunately, the severity of his injury is probably going to keep him out for the season. But I called him and talked to him yesterday afternoon and got the chance to visit with his mom when she was driving in. He’s very upbeat, and the good Lord only challenges those who can handle it, and I think he’s definitely one who can handle it and make the most of a bad situation.”
The focus at right guard now turns to former walk-on turned scholarship lineman Alex Pihlstrom and Colgate transfer Jack Badovinac.