Marcus Lattimore Knee Injury: The Latest
DISLOCATED KNEE DIAGNOSIS CONFIRMED, BUT SPURRIER OPTIMISTIC SUPERSTAR TAILBACK WILL PLAY AGAIN
University of South Carolina head coach Steve Spurrier confirmed on Sunday that star running back Marcus Lattimore suffered a dislocated knee during the second quarter of the Gamecocks’ win over Tennessee this weekend – confirming the diagnosis originally reported here on FITS.
And while the superstar tailback – who broke the school’s career touchdown record earlier this year – is indeed out for the season, Spurrier told the Associated Press that there was a chance Lattimore could take a medical redshirt for the 2013 season and return to the Gamecocks in 2014.
“We’re optimistic his football days are still ahead of him,” Spurrier told the AP. “There is a history of guys coming back from this.”
Spurrier’s comments would seem to indicate that Lattimore did not suffer the sort of arterial damage that was possible – if not expected – as a result of the gruesome knee injury he suffered against the Volunteers. In fact just last year high school quarterback Jacob Rainey had to have his leg amputated as a result of arterial damage caused by a similar injury.
Details are still sketchy at this point, but Spurrier’s comments represent a 180-degree departure from his somber statements on Saturday about how he knew Lattimore would be a success – although “I don’t know (in) what field of life.”
While being tackled from behind by Tennessee linebacker Herman Lathers on a second down running play, the Gamecock superstar and preseason All-American was hit low by Volunteers’ defensive back Eric Gordon causing his right knee to contort – badly.
In fact former Gamecock linebacker Anton Gunn described it as “the worst injury I have ever seen.”
Gordon – who some Gamecock fans accused of a dirty hit – took to Twitter to defend himself.
“Its unfortunate that boy got hurt …but I was just ballin!” he tweeted. “I clapped for em and ehthing (sic) when he got up chill out.”
Lattimore has bounced back from one season-ending injury already in his career – torn ligaments in his knee suffered last October in a game against Mississippi State. In 28 career games at USC, the 6-foot-1, 218-pound Duncan, S.C. native has rushed for 2,677 yards and amassed another 767 yards through the air. He’s also scored a school-record 41 touchdowns.
Supporters wishing to send a letter of encouragement to Lattimore are encouraged to send it to Marcus Lattimore, c/o USC Athletic Department, Rice Athletic Center, 1304 Heyward Street, Columbia S.C. 29208.
UPDATE: The University of South Carolina sports information office has provided an official update on Lattimore’s injury. According to the school, he suffered a “hyperextension of the knee (which) resulted in injury to several ligaments.”
“There were no fractures or additional injuries,” team physician Dr. Jeffrey Guy stated.
Pic: Travis Bell, Sideline Carolina