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CB Devin Butler reinjures foot, 2016 season in doubt

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Notre Dame’s veteran depth at cornerback took a hit during summer training as senior Devin Butler reinjured his left foot. Brian Kelly announced that Butler could miss 14 to 16 weeks after fracturing the same bone that he injured during practice the week before the Fiesta Bowl.

That timeline turns 2016 into a likely redshirt for Butler, who was expected to compete for a starting job opposite Cole Luke. He has a fifth-year available, seeing action in 37 of the 39 games the Irish have played since arriving on campus. Butler sat out the spring as his foot recovered.

The South Bend Tribune’s Eric Hansen was on-hand at Brian Kelly’s charity golf tournament when the head coach broke the news:

“It’s tough,” Kelly said. “(He’s) a guy that’s struggled both in his life and in football.

“He had a great semester academically. We really see him trending in the right way. And then to have an injury like that was very disappointing for him. And we’re disappointed for him.”

Notre Dame’s cornerback depth chart looks like another position to watch heading into camp as the Irish try to replace KeiVarae Russell and find the right starter opposite Cole Luke.

Rising junior Nick Watkins is rehabbing a broken arm. Sophomore Shaun Crawford looked strong in spring drills, but is still recovering from a torn ACL last August. Nick Coleman and Ashton White will compete as well. Troy Pride and Julian Love arrived on campus this weekend, both freshmen ready to compete.

Kelly said that Butler will have surgery next Monday, with a screw being inserted into the fracture.