USC’s Williams has ‘significant’ hamstring injury

USC starting quarterback and leading Heisman Trophy candidate Caleb Williams has a “significant” hamstring injury, and his status for the Trojans’ matchup against Tulane in the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic on Jan. 2 is yet to be determined, coach Lincoln Riley said Sunday.

“Those things, hamstrings are different for everybody, but the nature of this is pretty severe,” Riley said during the coaches’ news conference for the bowl. “We’ll rehab him hard and hope to have him available.”

Williams suffered the injury during the first quarter of the Pac-12 championship game Friday. After breaking off a 59-yard run, Williams “popped” his hamstring, Riley said. The 20-year-old remained in the game but was visibly limited in the 47-24 loss to Utah.

“He’s a warrior,” Riley said. “He fought through it the other night when a lot of guys wouldn’t.”

Riley said that if USC was playing within the next two weeks, Williams — who finished the regular season with over 4,000 passing yards and 37 touchdowns — would not be available. But the extended break could allow the sophomore to be healthy enough to play in the bowl game.

If Williams can’t play, the Trojans will turn to backup Miller Moss. The freshman appeared in three games this season, completing 12 of 14 pass attempts for 159 yards and one touchdown.

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