Posted by Jerry Hinnen
N.C. State fans hoping to hear good news from head coach Tom O'Brien at today's ACC Media Days must feel sorely disappointed, as O'Brien has instead confirmed that redshirt sophomore corner Jarvis Byrd has torn his ACL and will miss the 2011 season.
As if the news wasn't difficult enough for Byrd and the Wolfpack faithful to take, the injury is Byrd's second ACL tear in three years in Raleigh. One of O'Brien's most highly sought-after recruits in the Wolfpack's 2009 class, Byrd earned a starting role late in his freshman season but went out with his first knee injury in the final game of the year against North Carolina.
As a result, Byrd missed the entire 2010 campaign and redshirted. But he returned this past spring and had once again put himself into position to start, until suffering the new ACL tear in 7-on-7 work last Wednesday, according to O'Brien.
If there's any silver lining to Byrd's plight, it's that the Wolfpack still have plenty of experience in the secondary to fall back on. Both 2010 starting corners (David Amerson and C.J. Wilson) return, as do both starting safeties in juniors Earl Wolff and Brandon Bishop. If that foursome can stay healthy, Byrd's absence may not be felt too keenly.
But that's hardly guaranteed, and all the same, there's no question the ceiling for NCSU's 2011 defensive backfield has been lowered.
(And in other Wolfpack injury news, O'Brien also announced bruising running back Mustafa Greene won't return from a foot injury until October. Ouch.)
For more immediate Wolfpack news, follow our N.C. State CBS RapidReporter Mike Potter either here at CBSSports or on Twitter.