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Kyle McCarthy takes leave of absence from Irish

Aug 14, 2014, 11:20 AM EDT

Washington v Notre Dame Getty Images

Notre Dame announced this morning that graduate assistant Kyle McCarthy is taking a leave of absence from the football team to battle cancer. The former Irish captain is in his first season working with the Irish under Brian Kelly after retiring from the NFL.

McCarthy has begun chemotherapy treatment.

“A few weeks ago, I was diagnosed with a very treatable form of cancer,” McCarthy said in the statement. “Yesterday, I began chemotherapy as the next step in eliminating this disease. I’m truly blessed to have such amazing love and support from family and friends.

“Thank you to everyone for your thoughts and prayers over the last few weeks. I expect a full recovery and look forward to returning to the team during and after my treatment. Go Irish!”

Working with the secondary, McCarthy has been praised for his impressive work thus far in his return to his alma mater. Looking like a natural fit as a football coach, Kelly and the Irish staff are 100 percent behind McCarthy in his recovery.

“Kyle’s attitude and outlook toward his treatment is remarkable,” Kelly said in the statement. “We will support him the entire way. We are very confident he’ll receive the necessary treatment to make a complete recovery.”

McCarthy tallied 240 tackles in his Notre Dame career and served as the team captain of Charlie Weis’ 2009 team. He spent time with the Denver Broncos, Kansas City Chiefs and Oakland Raiders before retiring from the NFL.

McCarthy’s return date to the program is unknown, though his battle with cancer is one very close to Kelly’s heart, with the Kelly Cares foundation dedicated to early detection of cancer after Paqui Kelly overcame two bouts with cancer.

Notre Dame’s coaching staff is already short-handed with offensive coordinator Mike Denbrock recovering from a surgical procedure.

  1. subalum - Aug 14, 2014 at 11:42 AM

    Fight cancer like a champion Kyle!

  2. andy44teg - Aug 14, 2014 at 11:43 AM

    Good luck, Kyle!

  3. johngaltisspeaking - Aug 14, 2014 at 12:23 PM

    They are making huge strides in fighting cancer. They are saying within 5 years most cancers will not be life threatening and will be treated with long term meds.

    • papadec - Aug 14, 2014 at 3:13 PM

      I don’t particularly care for most of what jg posts – but why would anyone give him a Thumbs Down for this post?

  4. goirishgo - Aug 14, 2014 at 12:50 PM

    Hit cancer like you hit a WR crossing the middle, young man!

  5. jerseyshorendfan1 - Aug 14, 2014 at 1:43 PM

    When speaking of cancer, words like “very treatable form” and “after suffering two bouts” make you realize that we are fighting this dreaded disease. Don’t give up the fight, contribute to the American Cancer Society. Best wishes to Kyle for a speedy and complete recovery.

  6. irishmob89 - Aug 14, 2014 at 4:53 PM

    Very sad news, but it’s good to hear it’s treatable and he’ll make a full recovery. Kyle McCarthy will always have a special place at Notre Dame.

  7. irishlad19 - Aug 14, 2014 at 8:36 PM

    Praying for you, Kyle. Will light a candle at the Grotto when next on campus.

  8. yaketyyacc - Aug 15, 2014 at 5:50 AM

    say a prayer to St. Michael of the Saints. and God Bless.

  9. cfballfan1 - Aug 22, 2014 at 3:17 AM

    Godspeed toward a full & speedy recovery Kyle!

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