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Hunter’s recovery hits a snag

Jun 16, 2013, 12:41 PM EDT

Torii Hunter Jr

With the freshman class on campus and the football team starting voluntary workouts and summer school, the team is now in the hands of strength coach Paul Longo and medical trainer Rob Hunt.

That’s good news for an important recruiting class that will likely have a few early contributors come September. One athlete who doesn’t look like he’ll be ready to compete is wide receiver Torii Hunter Jr. The Texas native, who was drafted last week by the Detroit Tigers in the 36th round of the Major League Baseball draft, suffered a setback in his recovery from a broken femur.

The injury occurred at the US Army All-American game in early January, when Hunter’s leg broke in a non-contact drill. With a recovery time that was expected to take six months, the South Bend Tribune’s Tyler James caught up with Hunter, who said his femur isn’t healing properly.

This from James:

The hiccup in his recovery put a damper in his final month before heading to Notre Dame. Hunter had been regaining strength in the muscles above his knee, but was told to ease up the intensity level as the rest of the bone heals.

Hunter called the news depressing, but has tried to stay positive.

“I’ve been trying to keep the leg strong, doing my upper-body workouts and trying to stay in shape on the bike,” Hunter said. “There’s only so much you can do.”

His doctors at home haven’t given him a timeline of when the bone will be ready for increased exercise.

“They have no idea,” Hunter said. “It was supposed to be healed, but I don’t know. It’s just not.”

The January injury already had many expecting that 2013 would be a redshirt season for Hunter, but this type of news isn’t something you want to hear after six months of recovery — with an undetermined time line a scary ordeal for a young guy who has worked hard to get healthy.

In April, video surfaced of Hunter training, and Hunter said he was pain free. Working in concert with his doctors and the Notre Dame medical staff, Hunter’s summer will likely consist of rest and recovery now, waiting for his bone to heal properly.

  1. jerseyshorendfan1 - Jun 16, 2013 at 1:34 PM

    Hey Keith, how about some good news?

    • mtflsmitty - Jun 16, 2013 at 11:44 PM

      Good news? Bad news? Heck, I’m just hoping KA actually writes something of his own at some point. The reporting of someone else’s reporting is fine on a site like this every now and again. But it’s become the norm around here. Where are the deep, penetrating off season series KA was tempting us with a couple months ago?

      • andy44teg - Jun 17, 2013 at 10:10 AM

        I don’t know if you’ve been paying much attention lately, but the fit kinda hit the shan about a month-ish ago….pry put on hold any plans keith had about having a sit down with Bruce Heggie.

  2. bernhtp - Jun 16, 2013 at 4:38 PM

    It just doesn’t sound good for the poor kid. The freak injury was bad enough – a non-contact fracture of the femur – but this adds to my suspicion there is a deep underlying issue that won’t go away and may actually progress.

  3. yaketyyacc - Jun 17, 2013 at 5:19 AM

    has to be frustrating for this young man. but, the old saying is true, you can’t rush mother nature. patience and time will heal the leg, and he will be as good, maybe better than new. six months isn’t too long. the healing process usually concludes in two and a half months, but the full healing may go on for months more. not to panic. good luck.

    • irishdog80 - Jun 17, 2013 at 2:40 PM

      I agree that 6 months is not that long. He needs to let it rest and it will heal faster than his trying to hurry it along. I understand that an 18/19 year old thinks 6 months is a long time… but it really isn’t. Hope he heals up completely for spring football and baseball in 2014.

  4. fnc111 - Jun 17, 2013 at 4:13 PM

    He is going to red-shirt anyways so someone needs to tell him to chill. He may never play a down at ND. It’ll be baseball or bust for him after an injury like that.

    • bernhtp - Jun 17, 2013 at 5:43 PM

      The type of non-contact injury he got could’ve come from rounding first base hard let alone slamming into the catcher.

  5. loadofwash - Jun 18, 2013 at 12:39 AM

    Maybe the talent just sucks, maybe this loser can tape practice? Good luck with that.

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