USC Football Injury Report: Palaie Gaoteote has meniscus tear (8/10)

Alicia de Artola/Reign of Troy
Alicia de Artola/Reign of Troy /

Freshman linebacker Palaie Gaoteote suffered the same injury at Porter Gustin, suffering a slight meniscus tear requiring surgery. Here’s the USC football injury report for August 10.

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It seems one meniscus tear wasn’t enough for USC football as Fall Camp continue this week. Palaie Gaoteote is set to follow in Porter Gustin’s footsteps having suffered the same injury.

The freshman linebacker will undergo surgery on Monday to repair the slight tear, head coach Clay Helton said, putting him on the same timetable as Gustin, facing a two to four week layoff.

That will deny Gaoteote the chance to impress across the rest of Fall Camp and further add to USC’s injury woes, particularly at linebacker.

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Along with Gustin and Gaoteote, the position is also without starter Cameron Smith and backup Levi Jones, who have been sidelined with a hamstring and ankle problem respectively. WLB starter John Houston came out of practice on Thursday as well after taking a blow to the knee, but he was back practicing on Friday.

At the least, Gustin’s surgery was “phenomenal,” according to Helton. He was present at practice on Friday with his left leg bandaged up, but he didn’t need the help of crutches coming out of surgery. It’s now just a waiting game as he rehabs ahead of the start of the season.

The biggest concern is making sure the senior heals fully without any setbacks, particularly self-imposed ones.

“He’s a guy that you always make sure he’s not doing too much,” Helton said. “I told him to worry about his health and worry about being a coach.”

As he made that statement, Gustin was taking his coach’s advice and working with Malik Dorton and Elijah Winston after practice.

USC Football Injury Report:

  • Out for the season: LB Tayler Katoa (LDS Mission)
  • Out: LB Oluwole Betiku (hip), OL Chuma Edoga (hip), LB Palaie Gaoteote (knee), CB Je’Quari Godfrey (undisclosed), LB Porter Gustin (knee), LB Levi Jones (ankle), TE Erik Krommenhoek (hamstring), DL Jacob Lichtenstein (calf), K Chase McGrath (groin), WR Michael Pittman (shoulder), S Ykili Ross (hamstring), WR Jake Russell (hamstring), LB Cameron Smith (hamstring), RB Markese Stepp (undisclosed), LB Solomon Tuliaupupu (foot)

Friday’s light practice on Howard Jones Field commenced with a crowd of players on the sideline because of injury.

Wide receiver Michael Pittman, who suffered an AC sprain on Thursday, didn’t participate, handing off first team reps to Josh Imatorbhebhe.