Florida's Andre Debose tears ACL

Updated: August 7, 2013, 7:36 PM ET
By Michael DiRocco | GatorNation

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Florida's Andre Debose, one of the top kick returners in the nation, will miss the 2013 season after suffering a torn ACL during Tuesday's practice, the school announced.

"I know that Andre is disappointed," Florida coach Will Muschamp said. "He had been doing very well in camp, and we were more than pleased with his effort and attitude.

"Andre was hurt in a noncontact situation. He just planted his foot and there was a tear. He will have surgery after the swelling goes down. It is unfortunate, and you feel bad anytime that someone is injured, and the coaching staff and our team will be very supportive in assisting Andre during his recovery."

Debose -- a redshirt senior who could apply for a medical hardship for a sixth season of eligibility -- signed with Florida in 2009 as the No. 2 receiver in the nation. Then-coach Urban Meyer called Debose the next Percy Harvin. However, Debose missed the 2009 season because of a knee biceps tendon injury and has never made an impact on offense. He has just 29 catches for 543 yards and four touchdowns -- although all four TD catches were 64 yards or longer in 2011.

The 5-foot-11, 189-pound Debose flourished as a kickoff returner. He holds the Florida career record with four kickoff returns for touchdowns. That shares the SEC record with Willie Gault, Felix Jones and Brandon Boykin.

His career return average of 27.4 yards is a school record and ranks second in SEC history. He set a Florida single-season record by averaging 28.3 yards per return last season.

Mike DiRocco | email

ESPN Jacksonville Jaguars reporter

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