South Carolina running back Marcus Lattimore appeared to suffer one of the worst leg injuries we’ve ever seen, and early reports suggest the injury was every bit as bad as it looked.
Lattimore, a junior from Duncan, S.C., was injured on a second quarter carry against Tennessee on Saturday. He took a handoff out of the I-formation and gained a few yards before being wrapped by linebacker Herman Lathers. Junior defensive back Eric Gordon then dove at Lattimore’s lower half and his helmet appeared to go straight into Lattimore’s right leg (video here).
Lattimore was carted off the field and taken to the hospital by ambulance.
Bryan VanOchten shared the word circulating around the press box at the Alabama-Mississippi State game that Lattimore suffered a broken femur and tore all four of his knee ligaments — the PCL, LCL, MCL, and ACL. Payne Insider adds that he has a chipped knee cap.
The injury would have been awful for any player to suffer, but it was particularly devastating for Lattimore who has already worked so hard to come back from another knee injury.
Lattimore was hurt in South Carolina’s win at Mississippi State on Oct. 15 last season and suffered a season-ending left knee injury. He missed all of the team’s spring practices after undergoing surgery, and spoke about coming back even stronger.
“The main thing is getting stronger,” Lattimore said in April. “I feel like I’m almost there.
“I’ll never take my legs for granted again,” he said.
Lattimore worked all the way back and was enjoying another stellar season. The former SEC Freshman of the Year had rushed for 597 yards and 10 touchdowns entering Saturday’s game. He rushed for 65 yards and a touchdown on 11 carries against Tennessee before suffering the injury.
UPDATE: Gamecocks coach Steve Spurrier said on Sunday that Lattimore suffered a dislocated knee, but he would not confirm anything else about the season-ending injury.
UPDATE II: The official word from South Carolina is that Lattimore suffered injuries to knee ligaments, but no fracture or additional injuries.
Photo credit: Jeff Blake-US PRESSWIREGoogle+