Fifth-year senior Kapron Lewis-Moore hobbled out of Sun Life Stadium Monday night on crutches with an uncertain and bleak future.
Fifth-year senior Kapron Lewis-Moore waves goodbye to fans at his final home game in November.
An MRI exam this week revealed that the starting defensive end tore his anterior cruciate ligament late in the first half of Notre Dame's 42-14 loss to Alabama in the BCS National Championship game, Notre Dame confirmed Thursday afternoon. Lewis-Moore will undergo surgery at some point in the next two weeks and is expected to recover four to six months later.
The rehab process puts an obvious halt on the graduate's immediate future at the next level. Some analysts projects Lewis-Moore as a mid-to-late round draft choice after improving, especially as a pass rusher, in his final season.
Lewis-Moore started all 13 games of the 2012 season and made 40 tackles, including a career-high six sacks for Notre Dame's vaunted defensive line. He will now likely have to hope to follow a similar path to former classmate Jonas Gray, who injured his knee on Senior Day 2011 and later signed with the Miami Dolphins as an undrafted free agent.
"I don’t know what’s going on with it, but obviously it’s not good," Lewis-Moore said Monday night following the game. "I have no idea what it is."
This will be the second surgery on the 6-foot-4, 306-pound Texas native's right knee. He missed the final six games of the 2011 season after detaching his medial collateral ligament in the same knee during a 31-17 loss to Southern California.
Teammates reached out to Lewis-Moore in the hours and say after Monday's injury on social media, sending him prayers and wishing him a speedy recovery.
"Just rewatched my injury on the tv copy. Damn," he tweeted Wednesday. "But hey gotta keep moving! Thank you again for all the love and support. It means the world to me! Hope all my followers have a great day!"