Sooners LB Wort has torn ACL

Updated: August 21, 2009, 8:29 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

Oklahoma's heralded freshman Tom Wort will miss the season with a torn ACL, coach Bob Stoops said Friday, providing another hit to the Sooners' depth at middle linebacker.

"He was just jumping up for a ball and came down funny," Stoops said after Thursday's practice.

Wort was one of the revelations of the Sooners' training camp, thanks to his strong work throughout the early practices. He was expected to immediately join the Sooners' playing rotation and contribute on special teams as Oklahoma prepares for its Sept. 5 opener against BYU.

The Sooners' depth at the position has shrunk, especially because of senior middle linebacker Mike Balogun's eligibility issues. Balogun's eligibility was decertified by the NCAA last week for playing in a semi-pro football league after he turned 21. His playing status is uncertain for the upcoming season.

Balogun filed a lawsuit against the NCAA and was granted a temporary restraining order so he could continue practicing past the NCAA's 14-day blanket waiver, which expired on Wednesday. His case will be heard Monday in Cleveland County (Okla.) District Court. Balogun has continued practicing with the team.

Sooners starting middle linebacker Ryan Reynolds is overcoming a knee injury that forced him to miss the final eight games of the 2008 season. He has also been sidelined earlier in training camp for some practices with a slight hamstring injury.

Wort, from New Braunfels, Texas, was born in England before moving to the United States. He has played American football for only six years.

ESPN.com's Tim Griffin contributed to this story.

ALSO SEE