Redshirt freshman Jordan Mason will most likely be elevated into the starting position with Jerry Howard as his backup. Mason was the third-string B-back going into the preseason behind Benson and Howard but moved past Howard with strong play in camp. Johnson said that freshman Christian Malloy may also play as the third-string B-back, depending on the circumstances.
“Well, I said at the start that we had depth there and we’re going to find out,” Johnson said.
The Yellow Jackets open their ACC slate at 12:15 p.m. Saturday at Pittsburgh.
Mason has played well in two games, having gained 180 yards with a touchdown on 24 carries. He started the season opener against Alcorn State when Benson was held out for the first quarter for a violation of team rules and then played most of the final three quarters against USF after Benson’s injury.
“He’s played well when he’s been in there,” Johnson said of Mason. “I think he’ll just get better.”
Howard gained considerable experience last season as a freshman, playing nine games and rushing 23 times for 175 yards as the backup to Benson.
Benson appeared to suffer the injury on his fifth and final carry of the USF game. Benson took a pitch from quarterback TaQuon Marshall and then stepped awkwardly with his left foot as he ran upfield. He underwent an MRI Monday, with the results returned Tuesday morning.