After the game, Baylor Head Coach Art Briles confirmed that when QB Seth Russell left the game this afternoon and did not return, it was because of a "neck strain" and that he would not have been able to come back, even if the game had been in doubt. Apparently, it was a little bit more than that:
Update on Baylor QB Seth Russell: X-rays and a CT scan revealed a fracture in one of the bones of his neck. Will see a specialist next week.— Chuck Carlton (@ChuckCarltonDMN) October 24, 2015
Without any information about what kind of fracture we're talking about (information that I expect us to get relatively soon), it's hard to know what this might mean for Russell's availability against KSU in 12 days. It sounds similar to what Bryce Petty had last year that sidelined him for a week and affected him longer than that, but there's no way to know yet. Interestingly, this news follows a tweet I got about 30 minutes ago that, if I'm being honest, I didn't think much of at the time.
IF Seth misses any time, Baylor will turn to super-frosh Jarrett Stidham, our backup QB. His backup would then presumably be QB-turned-WR Chris Johnson.
We'll keep you guys posted on this as new information comes out.
Hi fellow Bears (and guests alike). Mark asked me to drop in and lend clarity where possible, but unfortunately there's little that I can add at this time. Cervical spine fractures can be as serious as paraplegic-causing states that handicaps a person for the rest of their life and necessitates a variety of specialists just to maintain life...or they can be relatively benign problems that have no effect on the spine and require little to not intervention. That Seth Russell is walking, talking and oriented, presumably without deficit, and is reportedly not currently admitted to the hospital are the best signs.
It would be easy to draw comparisons to our previous starting quarterback's spinal fracture, but these are very different entities. Petty's fracture occurred lower in his back and was shown via MRI to be 2 transverse process fractures. We don't know yet if Russell has even received an MRI and it hasn't been reported what type of fracture and which of the 7 cervical vertebra are fractured. While Petty's condition was easily treated with pain medicine, Russell's condition could necessitate anything from neurosurgery to pain medicine and rest. The nerves that exit the cervical spine control the hand, arm and shoulder, so even temporary swelling could greatly inhibit Russell's ability to function as a quarterback.
All together, unless the initial read of a fracture is incorrect, I would be very surprised to see Russell in action for Kansas State.
I wish I had better news. I wish had more news. I hate that I'm having to addend another one of these posts in just over one year.
Here's hoping for great news and prognosis with more information, for Seth Russell's livelihood first and Baylor football second. Mr. Stidham, you're needed on stage right...