Ohio State linebacker Kyle Berger Has Torn His ACL For the 2nd Time in a Year

By Patrick Maks on August 11, 2014 at 7:15p

Ohio State freshman linebacker Kyle Berger has torn his ACL. He announced the news via his Twitter account Monday evening: 

It's the second time in a year Berger, one of the nation's top recruits coming out of high school, has suffered such a crippling setback. He tore his ACL last August and missed his senior season at St. Ignatius High School in Cleveland. Sources told Eleven Warriors it's the same knee as last year. 

Before that, Berger finished his junior year with 105 tackles, 44 tackles-for-loss and 10 sacks to earn third-team All-Ohio honors by the Associated Press. He committed to coach Urban Meyer and the Buckeyes in April 2013.

Berger was expected to provide depth for a linebacker corps that’s struggled the last two seasons. 


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BuckeyeinSavannah's picture

This is when I would start to reconsider my future.  

-11 HS
SilverState's picture
+3 HS
Homey1970's picture

What's to "reconsider?"  Mr. Berger is a member of the greatest college football team and a student at one of the best universities in the country.  Sounds like he's got it covered.  Thanks.

+16 HS
Seattle Linga's picture

Correct Homey - well said 

+4 HS
Homey1970's picture

For the sake of comprehension, I’ll say again…"[Berger] is a student at one of the best universities in the country.  [With or without football] Sounds like he’s got it covered.  Thanks."

+1 HS
BuckeyeinSavannah's picture

If you read my post correctly. I said I would reconsider MY future. I never said anything about him.

+4 HS
Dips's picture

I honestly don't see the problem with his comment.  The guy could have serious, life-impacting complications if he pushes it too far.

I think. I'm not a doctor.

+17 HS
DefenceWinsChampionships's picture

Beat me to it... well said.

+1 HS
gumtape's picture

I am a doctor and I work in the Canton area where Football is everything. I also have no problem with the original comment. I see middle and high school age kids that play only because daddy is making them, which I have a problem with.

This guy is 18 years old and he has to go through another ACL reconstruction, then 10 months of rehab, then resume living his dream. I assume it is the same knee, in which case, there are things to consider:

1. Who performed the initial surgery? Probably UC. Did they also do his therapy and rehab afterwards? I feel a lot better with him on OSU campus where his rehab will be directed by the sports medicine department. It is a lot of ways like having a full time job without the distractions of dealing with a senior year of high school.

2. The replacement ligament comes from a cadaver. In a high profile case like this, the surgeon would be able to pick through a selection of donor "parts" and pick the one that appears the strongest. That is not usually the case with a normal patient like Uncle Doug who does landscaping and plays in a church league. Orthopedic surgeons are typically big sports fans and they want to see their procedures hold up.

3. Is it the same knee? I haven't seen any reporting on this.

4. As for life impacting complications, even though he is 18, he is technically an adult. He is old enough to be responsible for decisions that may impact his life long term.

High and tight boo boo

+9 HS
Poison nuts's picture

Yes Gumtape, same knee.

"Do not pass me, just slow down - I can move right through you" Superchunk - Precision Auto.

+1 HS
DefenceWinsChampionships's picture

There is absolutely no reason for this to get downvoted into oblivion. The man has a point. I know that surgeries are getting better and better, and are becoming easier to recover from. I also realize that he will be in some of the best possible hands going through his recovery through OSU. But I also understand that ACL surgery is no joke. I have friends in their early 30's who have major knee soreness due do a single ACL surgery, let alone two. Guys who were great athletes in high school and college who now worry if they'll be able to play bball with their kids down the road, because jumping already sucks for them. This guy isnt saying he should throw in the towel and just give up. He's saying that if he had two knee surgeries he would have to step back, reevaluate his situation, and ask himself if its worth it. And that is a valid point. Its easy for us to sit at our computer and say "He'll be fine!" and "There's no way he should give it up!" and "I cant believe you would even say such a thing!" when its not our bodies at stake. Burger is a smart kid and I'm sure he will make the best decision for him, but there is major risk involved for him if he decides to keep playing and no one should get angry with a poster for pointing that out. That being said, I hope Burger enjoys a speedy recovery and winds up fulfilling all of his goals and dreams.

+10 HS
2002osubuck's picture

Tell that to Frank Gore, he tore both his knees in consecutive years at Miami. Hes been pretty successful in the NFL for the 49ers for the last like 5yrs. 

+1 HS
sarasotabcg's picture

Frank Gore? The easiest way to protect shredded ligaments is by building the muscles nearest to the joint and through pain meds. Let's see Gore walk normally 5-10 years after his career is over when building muscle is no longer a priority for him and he has to start paying for all those meds.

+5 HS
Homey1970's picture

NFL will pay for those TBI meds, er, Obamacare will....er, well, ....

-3 HS
BuckeyeOfTheTiger's picture

I don't think Frank Gore is going to have to worry too much about paying for meds... this will be his 10th season in the league after all.


bleedscarlet's picture

Warren Sapp...

Slingin' swag since 1970


MichiganBuckeye222's picture

yeah, because former NFL players never go broke...

Representing the Buckeyes in the Mitten State since 1987.



+1 HS
swainpm's picture

2002OSUBuck hate to have to tell you BUT every situation in medicine is different. Its really not fair to draw parallels when comparing sports injuries/how tough a guy is. People do these kinds of things all the time and it just is not right. Look at how people treated Roby when he couldn't play in the bowl game last year.

+1 HS
sarasotabcg's picture

why is BuckeyeinSavannah getting dv'ed?

Ligaments don't heal. Speaking from experience, there's no guarantee of a good outcome even with the best doctors. Last had the procedure done in 2005 and my knee gives out at random times and will for the rest of my life.

When I was an athlete, I didn't care. But years later as a father, it's a huge problem and sometimes I wish I would've walked away sooner.

When Nate Williams went through something similar a few years ago, I cringed. Not for him now, but for him in 10-20 years.

+4 HS
bucks_symphony's picture

Very tough news here. It doesn't matter what many of us think. Whats really important here is what Kyle Berger thinks. It might also be possible that he came back a little too soon. Regardless, anyone who experiences horrific knee injuries can vouch that their knees are never the same. I have also gone through this process and had great medical care with OSU Sports meds team. Even with great care from some of the best in the business, I still have not been the same since that time.

Urban_Can_Recruit's picture

This is when I would start to reconsider my posting... 

-3 HS
BTBuckeye's picture

Oof. That's a bummer. Speedy recovery Kyle.

+4 HS
Scarlet_Lutefisk's picture

Tough news for Berger. Stay strong!

+8 HS
osu407's picture

If Hubbard hadn't already been switched back to linebacker, I'm guessing he would be doing that right now. 

+7 HS
clogan1032's picture

Already happened

+1 HS
dubjayfootball90's picture

Perfect gif for how I reacted after reading this. I truly hope berger recovers quickly and comes back stronger than ever

You can feed a bobcat all the chili it wants. That don't mean it's going to crap out diamonds.

+2 HS
Kain's picture

Damn I hate to hear stuff like this...let's hope this isn't a career ender...


+4 HS
BuckNutzGasMan's picture

ACL shouldn't be a career ender.  The surgery and rehab have gotten so good.  Weird that he tore the same one.

thatlillefty's picture

Not really. You tear it once, you're much more likely to tear it again. I wish the kid all the best, but this does not bode well.

+3 HS
BSTP DeCon's picture

Actually, I'm going to agree with LilLefty. Any knee or shoulder that ever goes out, no matter the surgery will never get back to 100%. Coming from a line of doctors and therapists in my family, that's what I've always heard.

+4 HS
southbuc's picture

They replace it with a tendon that is much stronger. 

+2 HS
DefenceWinsChampionships's picture

You can agree with him all you want, but its inaccurate. While the knee itself may never feel 100% again and the athlete may look a step slower, the ligament itself it typically expected to be thicker, tougher and stronger once it heals. Athletes can blow out the same knee again but they rarely tear the same ligament twice. Tearing a ligament, especially the ACL leads to some general instability in the knee and this can cause other ligaments to weaken throughout the recovery, this can then lead to tearing something else.

+2 HS
Dread's picture

Well, it depends on the first injury. If it was a partial tear, they may have chose to stitch or suture the ligament back together. In this case I would agree that it could be susceptible to future damage. If they used a tendon from his hamstring, I would believe that would be a stronger repair. 

Just my opinion. I am no doctor, just been doing research lately because it seems I sprained my LCL.

whiskeyjuice's picture

Also depends on rehab and recovery period. As mentioned earlier in the thread, we don't know how well that first rehab process was as it wasn't with the OSU medical staff.

"Championships are not won on Saturdays in November. Championships are won on Tuesdays in August." -- Kerry Combs

Wilkins78's picture

It is accurate.  There is a very high rate of athlete's having another ACL injury after a first. 20% injure the opposite leg and 10% re-injure the repaired ACL (according to one study, I've seen much higher rates in others).  The issue isn't so much the strength of the ligament (it's actually not as strong), but the placement of it, as nearly all current procedures do not place the replacement graft in an anatomically correct place.  Overall someone is 6 times more likely to re-injure an ACL than someone who hasn't had an ACL injury.

+1 HS
BSTP DeCon's picture

That's what I've always been told. It'll never be dutiable as the one your momma gave ya!

Wilkins78's picture

Tearing the same one is not uncommon, though tearing the opposite is more likely.

mtrotb's picture

This sucks.  Keep the FAITH Kyle.  Probably would have redshirted this year, now he will four years left to make his mark.


+4 HS
Buckeye5000's picture

%^&* IT!

Get better Kyle. Buckeye Nation is behind you.

2014 Undisputed National Champions!

+5 HS
gumtape's picture

High and tight boo boo

+12 HS
Fly Patterns's picture

What a Damn shame. But wow he seems to be determined from that tweet. Hope the very best for him.

+1 HS
Chief B1G Dump's picture

That's suuuucks. Hopefully he has a speedy recovery and his knee ligaments are back stronger than ever!

+1 HS
toad1204's picture

Good thing there's a top notch hospital close.  Get that thing back to good.

Nothing like dancing on the field in 02... 

+4 HS
DefendYoungstown's picture

Maybe tOSU can have their physicians fix him, make an investment in the kid.

What we can't do in the air we'll do on the ground.

+2 HS
Groveport Heisman's picture

Wonder if he rushed back? Oregons LT aslo re-tore an ACL he had tore in the bowl game against Texas. Don't usually hear too much about guys retearing the same acl that quickly. Think he was going to redshirt anyways and I still think he will have a very bright future as a Buckeye LBer.

Mark my words..I don't need acceptance. I'm catching interceptions on you innocent pedestrians.

+2 HS
yrro's picture

When I had mine done, they said up to a year it's pretty easy to re-tear if you push too hard. After that, you're more likely to tear the other one for some reason.

Worst part is the second tear reduces his options. He can go the cadaver route this time, but they usually don't do that for young guys. What they'll probably have to do is harvest a ligament from his *other* leg, which is going to make recovery that much more painful.

Lots of support to the young man -- it's a long, hard road.

+4 HS
Jake321's picture

I tore my acl at the end of my senior year of high school and was back in time for lacrosse (5-6 months). I also used a cadaver and I've had no problems with it.

+4 HS
BuckNutzGasMan's picture

PED's are no joke when it comes to rehab!!

I kid... I kid...

Hovenaut's picture

I'll look to the positive...as Kyle Berger already is. Keep that head up young man.

+5 HS
Rob Reese's picture

This kid needs a freaking break from the football gods.  Good luck, Kyle; Buckeye nation stands with you.

Alumni lounge attracts pretty people
+3 HS
ExpressiveBuckeye's picture

Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach him how to fish, and he will sit in a boat and drink beer all day.

+12 HS
Terry Porter's picture

I met Kyle on campus. He seemed like a really nice guy. Such a bummer. I wish him a speedy recovery.

1942, 1954, 1957, 1961, 1968, 1970, 2002, 2014, and counting.

+3 HS
buckeyeotaku's picture

i hate hearing stuff like this, i hope he comes out ok because two in a year is rough.

We don't give a damn for the whole state of Bichigan

+1 HS
BullCityBuckeye's picture

That sucks for this young man.  At least it appears he has a good attitude about the situation (which hopefully will serve him well the next year).

Speedy recovery, Kyle! 

+1 HS
45OH4IO's picture

This is when You hit the reset button on the Nintendo...

+8 HS
bucks15's picture

Had the chance to meet Kyle a few times through a mutual friend.  This couldn't have happened to a better young man.  The positivity in his tweet portrays that, hope he comes back stronger than ever.  

+6 HS
brandonbauer87's picture

I think you mean "couldn't have happened to a worse person". Or something. That's a sarcastic idiom that I'm not sure works both ways. 

CowCat's picture

I feel for the kid. I had a sprained ACL from skiing (no surgery)

There are also a lot of opinions about how to fix things, so that can be really confusing.

Fortunately, he has a great set of team doctors that can help him.

"We get paid to score touchdowns, not kick field goals"
-- Urban Meyer

thekornidentity's picture

Damn that's tough to hear. Well I guess I'm not gonna be the only student on campus recovering from a torn ACL this year.

“Nothing that comes easy in this world is worth a damn.” -Woody Hayes

longstb's picture

Be strong Kyle.  This sucks, but through adversity comes your true strength.

Please remember that all of us commenting on this thread would give our left arm to don a Scarlet and Gray uniform.  You have that chance, and you will.

All the best. 


+1 HS
DCNick's picture

I wish him well with his recovery. On the bright side, this should allow him to receive a medical redshirt. He may still be a freshman, eligibility wise, in the 2016 season.

BeatTTUN's picture

This is why depth is huge at LB. Thankfully we have enough LB's now that losing a guy of Bergers caliber is not going to hurt as much. He can take 2 years to rehab and then be ready to go.

The roster is just getting ridiculous with Dudes that can play at every single position.

Go Buckeyes Beat Michigan

+1 HS
CentralFloridaBuckeye's picture

Major bummer!  This freakin sucks! 

Sure hope he can come back.  Tough road for him to travel having it happen two years in a row. 

ShowThemOhiosHere's picture

That's a damn shame, but I certainly admire the attitude he seems to be taking towards his predicament.

Class of 2010.

Chestnut Ridge Buckeye's picture

One of the greatest things about being a Buckeye fan is seeing the many examples of young people who really live the truth that it's not what happens to you but how you respond to it that's important. I feel bad that this re-injury has occurred, but I am touched and inspired by his example. He's already a winner in my opinion.

+2 HS
Grayskullsession's picture

"if irony were made of strawberries, we' d all be drinking a lot of smoothies right now."

+3 HS
BroJim's picture

Hope it works out. Hard news

I season my simple food with hunger

cdub4's picture

I feel like St Ignatius players are almost jinxed when they play at OSU....Blake Thomas, Scott McVey now Berger

+1 HS
SilverBullet-98's picture

"The IGGY JINX" Sucks man!!

Berger was my favorite recruit, been to bummed to even comment til now!!!!!!

"The Past Builds the Future"

D-Day0043's picture

Terrible news... I was so looking forward to seeing him play. God Bless you young man, and I hope you have a speedy recovery. Keep the attitude you have and you will be back on the field in no time.

I am D-Day0043 and I approve this message.

Dread's picture

Good point. Isn't Jake Ryan from the same school. What are they doing up there?

Edit: replied to the wrong comment. Meant for the one above.

Ball-Z-Buck's picture

Im having Mike D'Andrea flashbacks!

Knarcisi's picture

Don't go there. 

Poison nuts's picture

I tend to believe he can come back, but it is a struggle. I tore my right ACL twice & had it reconstructed twice. Last time was back in 98. The surgery was nowhere near as good as it is now & I've been good since. There is unfortunately no standardization on this situation, like "it'll never be the same" or "it'll heal stronger". There's just no way to say for sure. It varies by person - how their joints work naturally (some people just have looser joints, ligaments, etc), how their bodies react to the new ligament, the doctor, how they rehab, & so on. So there isn't an easy answer as to what will happen now, but there are plenty of people in the world with multiple ACL reconstructs who return to full strenuous activities. For instance, there is a man named Danny Way who jumped the Great Wall of China on a skateboard. He has had 2 ACL reconstructs in each knee! I will look at the bright side on this & believe wholeheartedly that Kyle can come back from this. OSU, I imagine, has some damn fine orthopedic surgeons on the job so he'll have the best care he can get. Get after it Kyle - plenty of people rooting for you!

"Do not pass me, just slow down - I can move right through you" Superchunk - Precision Auto.

+1 HS
GlueFingers Lavelli's picture

Any kid who has it in him to immediately let everyone know he is going to come back strong, is probably mentally and physically tough enough to do it. I think he will recover. Seems like a really good kid as well. Good attitude.  GET WELL KYLE!

EDIT: does anyone else think Kyle looks like he could be the Big Boy burger statue?  Big Boy Bergers???

Dustin Fox was our leading tackler as a corner.... because his guy always caught the ball.

whiskeyjuice's picture

I'm hoping for a smooth and healthy surgery and rehab. Good luck young sir.

"Championships are not won on Saturdays in November. Championships are won on Tuesdays in August." -- Kerry Combs

BCKIIS's picture

Not sure why everyone is debating the pros and cons.  Nothing in life is guaranteed let alone playing football.  The key thing that I take away from all of this is what Berger said.  Let's get it!  That is the attitude that will ultimately lead to the best outcome for him not only in football but everyday life.  Good luck Kyle, get well soon.

bakerjon's picture

Sad news

"You do what I cannot do. I do what you cannot do. Together we do great things"