Sophomore safety Darius West suffered a season-ending knee injury on Friday during practice, UK Coach Mark Stoops said on Saturday after the Cats’ first scrimmage.
West, a 6-footer from Lima, Ohio, injured his patellar tendon. West played in 10 games last season and was a star on special teams. He finished with 17 tackles last season, including seven in the UK victory over Charlotte.
It’s been an injury-plagued couple of years for West, who missed all but two games of his senior season at Central Catholic after being hurt. Stoops said this injury was a different leg than his previous injury.
That spot likely will be filled by seniors Marcus McWilson and Blake McClain, who also sees time at the nickelback spot. There’s also some flexibility with safety Mike Edwards, too.
“It’s extremely tough for the kid, you really feel for him,” defensive coordinator D.J. Eliot said of West.
Other injuries of note included Mikel Horton, who suffered an ankle injury. Wide out Blake Bone also was unable to go while batting a hamstring injury.