Ondre Pipkins: Michigan DT Injures Neck in Practice

Tim DanielsFeatured ColumnistAugust 17, 2012

Courtesy: Rivals.com
Courtesy: Rivals.com

Michigan defensive tackle Ondre Pipkins suffered a neck injury in practice and was taken to a local hospital for precautionary reasons, according to Kyle Meinke of AnnArbor.com.

The report states Wolverines head coach Brady Hoke said Pipkins was able to move all of his limbs, and the hospital trip was just so doctors could evaluate him. Neck injuries are dangerous, so the team decided to take the safe route.

Pipkins is a highly regarded freshman who was given a 5-star rating by Rivals before ultimately deciding to sign with Michigan. He was expected to make an immediate impact by stepping right into the defensive line rotation.

He was a key signing for Hoke given the loss of tackles Will Heininger and Mike Martin, leaving a lack of depth in the middle of the defensive line for Michigan.

Pipkins has shown off a rare combination of power and agility, giving the diehard Michigan fans hope he would lessen the impact of those losses. It's unclear how long the injury might keep him sidelined.

Michigan opened the season ranked No. 8 in the USA Today preseason poll, so expectations are obviously high throughout the diehard fanbase. Losing a player with as much potential as Pipkins would be a setback based on his strong showings so far.

The bright side is that the injury doesn't sound as serious as it could have been. The term "neck injury" can lead to some devastating results, so to hear that he's still able to control all of his movement is great news.

Michigan will open the season against Alabama on September 1, which is just over two weeks away.