LOGAN — BYU’s banged-up offensive backfield has been dealt another tough blow.
Before kickoff against Utah State Friday night, coach Bronco Mendenhall said that senior running back Michael Alisa has been sidelined for the remainder of the season due to a groin injury.
Alisa has a redshirt available, and could return for the 2014 season. He missed most of the 2012 campaign because of a broken arm.
With Alisa out, freshman Algernon Brown jumped to No. 2 on the depth chart — backing up Jamaal Williams — and ahead of Paul Lasike.
Williams returned to action Friday after missing the Middle Tennessee game. The sophomore running back suffered a concussion against Utah on Sept. 21. Meanwhile, running back/kickoff returner Adam Hine was sidelined Friday due to a concussion suffered against Middle Tennessee.
In the first half, Williams ran 10 times for 63 yards, including a 44-yard run that set up a touchdown. Brown had seven carries for 20 yards at halftime.
THE OLD WAGON WHEEL: Since 1948, the Old Wagon Wheel has been symbolic of football supremacy between BYU and Utah State.
USU won 18 of the first 27 games between the two schools with the Old Wagon Wheel at stake, but the Cougars have dominated the series since the late 1970s.
The Old Wagon Wheel represents the many miles traveled by Mormon pioneers across the plains to the Salt Lake Valley in the mid-1800s.
NOTES: Freshman Brad Wilcox made his first start at left tackle for the Cougars. With only one exception, BYU and Utah State have played the Friday of the first weekend of October since 1991, the day before the start of LDS general conference. Entering Friday’s game, BYU held an 45-34-4 lead in the all-time series against USU. Prior to Friday night, the Cougars were 272-161-13 against Mountain West Conference opponents.
Copyright 2015, Deseret News Publishing Company