The two players banged helmets at the end of a running play Saturday. Etheridge appeared to have hurt his neck and was taken to a hospital for evaluation, but Auburn officials said he was able to move all of his extremities.
Etheridge lay on the field for several minutes while both head coaches stood at midfield looking on. Auburn players knelt on the sideline and on the field.
The safety was strapped to a backboard with his head immobilized, and flashed a thumbs-up as he was taken off the field and up a tunnel to a waiting ambulance.
Etheridge entered the game fourth on the team with 49 tackles.