Illinois’ spring game may have come with a price on Saturday.
Near the end of the scrimmage, defensive tackle Calvin Avery needed to be helped off the field after sustaining an injury. He was down on the field for awhile with an apparent knee injury. Avery needed to be carted off the field.
After the game, Lovie Smith was asked about the severity of Avery’s injury, but there was no information available. Smith was hoping the injury wasn’t serious.
#illini coach Lovie Smith told us reporters after the spring game that the severity of Calvin Avery's injury wasn't immediately known. Still hope that it wasn't serious.
— Jeremy Werner (@JWerner247) April 13, 2019
Avery is a former four-star prospect and played in all 12 games on the defensive line for the Illini last season. Even as a rising sophomore, Avery was expected to be a key cog for Illinois.
Last season, Avery totaled 18 tackles, including 1.5 for loss. He posted a season-high four stops in Illinois’ 55-31 win over Minnesota and recorded a tackle for loss against Purdue.
If Avery’s injury is serious, it would be a huge blow to the Illinois defense heading into the 2019 season.