An academic issue cost Jela Duncan the entire 2014 season. Now, an injury issue could affect his chances of seeing the field entering the 2015 season.
Duke revealed in a press release Tuesday that Duncan will be sidelined indefinitely because of what’s been diagnosed as a partially torn right pectoral muscle. The running back sustained the injury during Monday’s practice, and it’s apparently an issue that’s bothered him in the past.
“Jela’s injury is obviously disappointing because we know how hard he’s worked to get back into the thick of things following the two shoulder surgeries,” head coach David Cutcliffe stated.
It was announced in December of 2013 that Duncan was suspended for not only the Chick-fil-A bowl matchup with Texas A&M, but for the entire following season as well because of a violation of university academic policy. He was officially reinstated in January of this year.
At the time of his suspension, Duncan’s 562 yards were tops on the team for the 2013 season. He ended up No. 2 behind Josh Snead and his 651 yards, one year after leading the Blue Devils with 553 yards on the ground. Duncan’s also a weapon out of the backfield as he totaled 32 receptions for 212 yards in 2012 and 2013.
Duncan’s not the only injury to hit the position, although the two additional dings aren’t nearly as severe. The school also announced that redshirt sophomore Joseph Ajeigbe and sophomore Shaun Wilson are nursing lower body injuries and are currently sidelined from contact drills.
Said the coach, “Just when you feel comfortable with four experienced running backs on the depth chart, three of them are in the training room.”
The injuries sustained by Ajeigbe and Wilson don’t appear to be long-term.