There’s nothing worse to hear than season-ending injury news from a starter, and unfortunately Syracuse Orange fans won’t be spared from it this season.
David Wohlabaugh Jr., the Kentucky transfer who won the starting job at right tackle, will miss the rest of 2023. Head Coach Dino Babers made the announcement during his Thursday radio show.
The redshirt sophomore left the game against Western Michigan in the second quarter, after a Broncos’ defender fell on top of him. He was using crutches on the sidelines during the second half, and on Tuesday, he had a boot on his left foot in addition to the crutches while outside the Orange practice facility.
Since he only played in two games, Wohlabaugh may be able to pursue a medical redshirt and be able to keep his three remaining years of eligibility.
He is the second SU player to be ruled out for the year - TE Steven Mahar tore his ACL in training camp.
His extended absence could push an already-drained offensive line to the brink. Hopefully earlier indications that Kalan Ellis and Joe More will be ready to return Saturday against Purdue hold up. If both, or even just one, can play, it should shake up the starting five.
Steve looked into possibilities earlier this week, and he and I agree that ideally, you’d want to put Ellis back in his left guard spot, slide Chris Bleich over to the opposite guard spot (where he spent all of 2022), and have More play right tackle.
Jakob Bradford and Mark Petry are at the top of the depth chart on the right side for now, and it’s extremely unlikely we’ll hear otherwise until close to kickoff on Saturday night.
Best wishes to David and we hope he has a full recovery before the 2024 season.