Illinois receiver Mikey Dudek out for season again with torn ACL
For the second straight year, Mikey Dudek got crushing offseason news.
The Illinois receiver suffered another torn anterior cruciate ligament on the same knee he injured last year. Once again, Dudek will be out for the season.
Lovie Smith announced the news at practice on Friday.
Lovie delivered some bad news today. #Illini WR Mikey Dudek will miss his 2nd straight season with a torn ACL.
— Illini Football (@IlliniFootball) April 9, 2016
Dudek suffered the injury in practice earlier in the week and was held out because of it.
He was able did redshirt last year after the first ACL tear. It remains to be seen what his eligibility situation will be moving forward, but he’d be a strong candidate for a medical hardship waiver.
It’s a crushing blow for an offense that figured to lean heavily on the third-year wideout. Dudek was Illinois’ star receiver as a freshman in 2014. That season, he led the Illini with 76 catches and 1,038 yards en route to Freshman All-America honors. Both of those were Illinois freshman records.
Without Dudek, West Lunt will not have his go-to option for his final year of Champaign. Couple that with the loss of receivers Geronimo Allison and Marchie Murdock and pass-catching back Josh Ferguson, and there will be plenty of new contributors in 2016.
Desmond Cain and Malik Turner are Illinois’ top two returning receivers and Justin Hardee will be back, as well.
Spoke with Dudek and he is in high spirits. Gets surgery April 12 & plans/hopes to attend the Spring Game April 16 supporting his team.
— Taylor Rooks (@TaylorRooks) April 9, 2016