Late last week, Penn State head coach Joe Paterno told reporters his football team was in good health as the first weekend of August camp approached.
Then came Sunday's scrimmage and promising sophomore linebacker Mike Mauti ripped up a knee. Penn State athletics released a small statement on Mauti's injury on its football website, gopsf.com, announcing Mauti had torn the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in one of his knees. He will undergo surgery shortly and the expected rehab time is nine months.
Mauti played as a true freshman last year and can redshirt in 2009.
Mauti's loss is huge. He was Penn State's best young linebacker and was pushing for a starting spot. Mauti has the size (6-2, 230) to play inside or outside but was ideally suited to play outside.
With Mauti out, PSU's starting linebacker trio is Sean Lee, Navorro Bowman and Josh Hull. Another young linebacker to watch is Nate Stupar.