Unfortunately for Duke, their worst fears have been realized when it comes to their best player on the defensive side of the ball.
Following up on the ominous reports overnight, the Blue Devils confirmed in a press release Tuesday morning that Kelby Brown has a torn ACL in his left knee and will miss the entire 2014 season. The linebacker incurred the injury on the second play of Duke’s first scrimmage of summer camp Monday.
Brown will undergo surgery Wednesday to repair the damage.
“Obviously our hearts go out to Kelby and his family,” head coach David Cutcliffe said in a statement. “As I said last night, here is a young man who is an All-ACC and All-America-type player on the field, and even a better person off the field. He has been and will continue to be an integral part of our program. He’s as fine a representative of our program as we have, and nothing will change that. He’s seen this type of adversity before, and I’m confident he’ll overcome this challenge.”
In late November of 2010, Brown tore the ACL and MCL in his right knee. He tore the ACL in the same knee in February of 2012 and missed that entire season. Because of what’s now two seasons wiped out due to injury, the fifth-year senior could appeal to the NCAA for a sixth season of eligibility in 2015.
A first-team All-ACC selection in 2013, Brown ranked second in the conference with 8.8 tackles per game. He was a preseason All-ACC selection this year as well.