Linebacker Kelby Brown—a rising junior—underwent a successful surgery to repair a tear in his right ACL, Duke announced Thursday. Brown, who earned academic All-ACC selection as both a freshman and a sophomore, has been an impact player when healthy, but he has also battled injuries throughout his career.
As a freshman, Brown enjoyed a productive year and earned a spot in the starting lineup. He finished fourth on the team in tackles despite playing in only nine games before tearing his ACL against Georgia Tech.
Last year, Brown led the team with seven tackles for loss despite missing games against Virginia and Georgia Tech with a different leg injury. He finished third on the team with 65 total tackles. Head coach David Cutcliffe has also pinpointed him as one of the defense’s emotional leaders, so his loss is a huge blow to a team that was decimated by injuries on that side of the ball last year.
While the team has not yet announced a timetable for his return, ACL surgery generally requires a minimum recovery time of at least six months.