OXFORD, Miss. (AP) -- Mississippi's D.T. Shackelford promising career was derailed by a serious knee injury that caused him to miss both the 2011 and 2012 seasons.
But the 6-foot-1, 242-pound fifth-year senior is back and ready to prove he can help the Rebels' defense this fall.
Second-year coach Hugh Freeze is trying to figure out how Shackelford fits into a defense that is still young, but slowly improved last season.
Shackelford made 48 tackles, including nine tackles for a loss and five sacks during a breakout sophomore season in 2010, but Freeze says it's uncertain how close he'll be to that previous level.
Shackelford says his knee feels fine and he's slimmed down to his playing weight during his freshman and sophomore seasons. The remaining recovery has to take place in his head.