Ole Miss defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche will likely not play against Texas A&M because of a concussion, according to coach Hugh Freeze.
UPDATE: Freeze told Ole Miss play-by-play announcer David Kellum during the pregame radio show that Nkemdiche will likely not play against the Aggies after waking up this morning with headaches, according to Richard Cross, sideline reporter for the Ole Miss IMG Sports Network.
Nkemdiche sustained a concussion in the Rebels’ loss to Memphis last week and has been going through concussion protocol this week. Earlier on Saturday, Freeze told the SEC Network he feels good about having his star defensive lineman in the lineup against the Aggies.
“Our concussion protocol has been ongoing throughout the week, and everything has been positive,” Freeze told the SEC Network. “I’m very optimistic, but I haven’t gotten a final word just yet.”
Earlier this week, Freeze said Nkemdiche had some final tests to pass before he would be cleared by the training staff, and on Thursday, Cross tweeted that Nkemdiche had passed those tests and was cleared to play, according to Rebels defensive coordinator Dave Wommack.
Chuck Rounsaville of the Ole Miss Spirit tweeted on Friday that it was now “official” that Nkemdiche had passed the concussion tests.
Nkemdiche, who is regarded as a potential top-5 NFL draft pick if he declares after the season, has 17 total tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks and four quarterback hurries through Ole Miss’ first seven games.