Could it get any worse injury-wise for the University of Miami football team?
Hurricanes freshman Sam Bruce, one of the most talented high school receivers in the nation when he played at Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas, sustained a non-football-related broken leg on Thursday, the Miami Herald learned.
Bruce will likely miss the season, meaning he would be a redshirt freshman next season and still have four years of eligibility.
“We were told to direct everybody to the University of Miami and they would take care of it,” Bruce’s mother, Tracye Wilkerson, told the Miami Herald on Friday morning, confirming it was a leg injury.
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She said he was in the hospital but not UM Hospital yet.
“He will be transported to the UM Hospital, where they will take care of everything,’’ Wilkerson said.
When asked if the injury was severe, as told by multiple sources to the Miami Herald, Wilkerson said: “No, he’s fine.”
The Herald learned later in the morning, according to a source, that Bruce’s leg was broken. The Herald was also told by multiple sources that the injury was basketball-related, but Wilkerson said that wasn’t true.
UM released a short statement saying: “Freshman wide receiver Sam Bruce sustained a non-football-related injury to his lower extremity. Miami team doctors are still evaluating the extent of his injury. He will be out indefinitely.”
Bruce already is suspended for Miami’s first three games, stemming from a photo that showed Bruce holding a gun, according to a source, in an incident that occurred last Feburary.
The 25th-ranked Hurricanes (1-0) will face FAU (1-0) at 6 p.m. Saturday at Hard Rock Stadium.
Bruce, nephew of former NFL great Isaac Bruce, is a 5-8, 180-pound Under-Armour All-American speedster who was rated the No. 7 overall wide receiver prospect in the nation and a four-star player by every recruiting service before he signed with Miami.
“Great, great practice player,” UM coach Mark Richt said of Bruce on Wednesday. “Works hard. Brings a lot of energy. He’s not getting as many reps as the other guys, so he’s fresher. But when he gets his reps, he’s going full speed. He looks like a player.”
The Hurricanes have sustained numerous injuries recently, most of them on the defensive side of the ball, though fellow receiver Lawrence Cager sustained an ACL tear before the season and is rehabilitating this year. Linebacker Jamie Gordinier tore his ACL last week in the season opener.
Richt confirmed Thursday night, before Bruce’s injury was known, that defensive tackle Courtel Jenkins and cornerback Adrian Colbert had surgical knee procedures this week — making it worse for an already depleted defense.