SOUTH BEND – Notre Dame middle linebacker Joe Schmidt is out for the season because of a fractured ankle that will require surgery, Irish Coach Brian Kelly announced Sunday.
Schmidt was injured during Notre Dame’s 49-39 win over Navy Saturday night in Landover, Maryland.
A former walk-on, Schmidt earned a scholarship at Notre Dame and moved up the ranks in the Irish defense.
“Everyone is going to have to pick up the slack for a guy that did most of the work,” Kelly said Sunday. “He’s a big loss. Our guys understand it’s the next man in and let’s get ready to roll.”
The next man is true freshman Nyles Morgan who replaced Schmidt Saturday against Navy.
“We are certainly going to have to take some of that load off of Nyles and give it to others,” Kelly explained. “We put that on Joe’s plate, but we won’t be able to do that with Nyles.”
Notre Dame, which dropped two spots to No. 8 in the AP poll today, is 7-1 on the season and will go on the road to face No. 11 Arizona St next Saturday in Tempe with a 3:30 p.m. kickoff EST.
The Sun Devils beat No. 17 Utah 19-17 in overtime Saturday in Tempe to improve to 7-1 on the season.