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Football: Avery Sebastian to undergo season-ending surgery for torn Achilles tendon

Cal junior safety Avery Sebastian, one of the team’s emotional leaders, will undergo season-ending surgery Thursday to repair a torn right Achilles tendon, coach Sonny Dykes announced.

“It’s a pretty significant blow,” Dykes said. “He’s very disappointed.”

It’s the latest setback for Sebastian, who suffered a concussion during fall training camp and missed two weeks of practice. He was cleared in time to play in last Saturday’s opener vs. Northwestern, and had 11 tackles before being injured in the second quarter of the Bears’ 44-30 loss.

“It’s tough for him. Avery’s a kid that loves to play football, has a tremendous passion for the game,” Dykes said. “He’s one of our leaders on a team that doesn’t have a lot of leadership. I hate it for him.

“He’ll be back better than ever.”

Sebastian will be eligible to reclaim a year of eligibility through a medical redshirt.

Junior Michael Lowe will assume the starting strong safety job.

Meanwhile, linebacker Khairi Fortt, who suffered a head injury on Saturday, was cleared to practice Tuesday.

Running back Brendan Bigelow, also sidelined by a blow to the head, was held out of practice pending clearance through concussion protocols, but could play Saturday against Portland State.

The status of defensive end Brennan Scarlett (hand) and linebacker Nick Forbes (back) remains uncertain and it’s almost certain neither will play Saturday.

Dykes did not rule out the possibility either might eventually apply for a medical redshirt year, but said that discussion is premature.

Scarlett has been sidelined since last season when he twice broke his hand, then had surgery to clean out a subsequent infection.

Asked why the recovery time has been so long, Dykes said a bone graft was performed during the surgery and Scarlett simply has not been medically cleared for contact in practice.

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Jeff Faraudo

  • NapaBear

    Defence became fatally weak up the middle after he was gone. Yikes. Hope they can sort that out somehow.

    Glad we’ve got some DB talent on the way for next year.

  • wehofx

    DAMN!!!

  • Raf

    Did anyone see on what play he was injured?? Article said second quarter, I reviewed the game tape saw him make a tackle on Northwestern’s 3rd to last play of the quarter. He made the hit, popped up and looked OK (for the second they showed him), then didn’t see him again.

  • Shaka

    We are all truly bummed about Sebastian’s blight, but as Sonny says, he’ll be back better than ever. Sebastian, If you read this stuff, know we support you. You remind me a bunch of Oakland’s Ronnie Lott, jolting, tough and smart. Hall of Fame quality, so hang in there.

    This is such a young team, and with a few recruits to fill the pukas and more experience, this Ole Blue is sensing the whiff of roses. We’re fun to watch again. Go Bears, beat SC.

  • saber

    Jeez, after two years of awful injury luck I was hoping things would go easier on us this year, and here we go again. I guess the law of averages has decided to make an exception because we are overdue for some good luck, in my humble opinion. these are three very important players at their respective group, what a blow it would be to lose all there. and we are just one game in.

  • 66Bear

    I join with Shaka in expressing best wishes for a quick and complete recovery for Avery Sebastian and to express my thanks that he chose to come to Cal to compete with the Bears. Notwithstanding such a brief observation of his attitude and performance, it is clear how much he will be missed this season. But I suspect that his presence on the sideline alone this year will motivate and inspire his teammates. Go Bears! Beat Portland State!