Penn State DT PJ Mustipher out for the year

·1 min read

The Penn State Nittany Lions will be without one of their top defensive players for the remainder of the 2021 season. Defensive tackle PJ Mustipher will miss the rest of the season after suffering what turned out to be a season-ending injury at Iowa in Week 6.

Mustipher was injured on the opening drive of Penn State’s recent road game at Iowa. He did not return to the game and was seen later on the Penn State sideline on crutches. The news of Mustipher being out for the year certainly seemed to take head coach James Franklin by slight surprise.

“PJ will be out for the season,” Franklin said in a post-practice media availability on Wednesday evening, according to Lions 247.

Replacing Mustipher isn’t the easiest thing to do, but Franklin noted he was satisfied with the effort and production he saw from D’Von Ellies in replacing the injured Mustipher at Iowa.

“Obviously PJ, we think, is an elite-level player, so they still got work to do,” Franklin said of the players that will be used to try filling in for Mustipher. “But I thought overall those guys did some good things.”

This is absolutely a difficult blow for Penn State to take as Mustiopher was the only returning starter on the defensive line for Penn State this season. His absence will be a challenge to overcome, but Penn State is fortunate to have better depth at the position than it does at the quarterback position that has been under a bright spotlight these past few days.

Penn State is off this week, giving the Nittany Lions a little extra time to get the vacant defensive tackle position hashed out before hosting Illinois in Week 8.

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