The weeks passed, the hits kept adding up, and Kansas junior Tony Pierson’s concussion symptoms kept surfacing. So Tuesday, after careful thought, KU football coach Charlie Weis revealed that he was shutting down Pierson with two games remaining.
“He could go either way,” Weis said. “I think the smart thing for me is to not be a hypocrite, and I don’t think we should be playing Tony the next two games.”
Pierson, who finishes the season with 24 catches for 333 yards and 163 rushing yards, will miss Saturday’s game at Iowa State and the Nov. 30 season finale against Kansas State. The initial injury occurred against Texas Tech on Oct. 5, and Pierson missed most of the next four games. He returned against Oklahoma State on Nov. 9 before absorbing another big hit against West Virginia on Saturday.
“In the age of concussions, somebody has got to make a stand,” Weis said. “Somebody has got to make a stand when a guy still has a possibility of playing, and sit a guy that is still questionable.”
The hope is that Pierson will be healthy and ready to go for spring ball in March. When healthy, Pierson was KU’s most effective receiver and big-play threat.
“He’ll be chomping at the bit,” Weis said. “And having a healthy Tony is critical to the success of our program, but not at the risk of Tony.”