'Wild Card of the Defense' to Play Thursday?

Make no mistake about it, redshirt sophomore Darius McClure is an important piece to the Seminole defense but the Alabama native has battled with a bum knee the past week. Will he be ready to go when it's time to take the field against N.C. State?

Defensive coordinator Mickey Andrews expressed concern Monday afternoon that sophomore safety Darius McClure might not be able to play against N.C. State Thursday.

But in the evening McClure set it straight. He expects to be in the lineup when the Tribe takes the field against the Wolfpack in Raleigh, N.C.

"I should be good to go," McClure said.

Andrews' concern was due partly because of an incident that occured in FSU's game against Rice. In that contest, McClure landed on his right knee while trying to make a tackle on an Owls player.

"I have a little pain from that but it's nothing I can not work through," McClure said.

But while the sore right knee was thought to be part of the issue, some of Andrews' primary concern stemmed from McClure's continued improvement after offseason surgery on his leg.

After fracturing the tibia in his left leg during spring practices, No. 24 had a rod surgically placed on May 31st. McClure, though, says that he has bounced back from the problem and no ill signs are being felt.

"I let it heal over the summer that's why I didn't do much as workouts," McClure said. " I worked with (strength and conditioning) Coach ( Jon) Jost and everything. I did a little rehab and got back just in time for two-a-days. So everything (is) good."

Despite not being a starter, McClure's play is critical to an FSU defense that has battled with injury. He is currently listed as the No. 2 rover and free safety. He is also a starter on kickoff coverage.

He is currently ninth on the team with eight total tackles and one pass break up.

"I am the wild card of the defense," he said with a smile.

Nole Digest Top Stories