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NC State offensive lineman injured during touchdown celebration (Video)

Sam Cooper
·2-min read

No. 23 NC State finally got on the scoreboard late in the third quarter against Kentucky in the Gator Bowl, but it came at a cost.

On a fourth-down play from the 9-yard line, NC State quarterback Bailey Hockman evaded pressure and floated one through traffic to C.J. Riley for a touchdown.

The score cut Kentucky’s lead to 13-7, and the offense was excited about it.

Riley’s teammates, including center Grant Gibson, went to celebrate with him in the end zone. Gibson and Riley both jumped in the air for an embrace, and Gibson landed awkwardly on his left leg and crumpled to the turf in pain.

Gibson remained on the turf for a few minutes before being helped off the field and into the locker room. He had a significant limp as he left the field. Gibson later returned to the sideline in shorts and a T-shirt. The ESPN broadcast reported that the early word on Gibson’s prognosis included “ligament damage.”

The redshirt junior arrived at NC State as a defensive tackle recruit, but moved over to the offensive line in 2018 and has thrived. Gibson has been a stalwart on the Wolfpack offensive line the past two seasons. He has started every game at center the past two years, 23 in all.

NC State entered the Gator Bowl with an 8-3 record on the year.

JACKSONVILLE, FL - JANUARY 2: Head Coach Dave Doeren of the North Carolina State Wolfpack leads his team on to the field before the start of the game against the University of Kentucky Wildcats at the 76th annual TaxSlayer Gator Bowl at TIAA Bank Field on January 2, 2021 in Jacksonvile, Florida.  (Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images)
NC State coach Dave Doeren leads his team on to the field before the start of the Gator Bowl against Kentucky. (Photo by Don Juan Moore/Getty Images)

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