Tuesday November 11th, 2014

Duke linebacker Kelby Brown and tight end Braxton Deaver were each granted a sixth season of eligibility by the NCAA and will be allowed to play the 2015 season, the school announced Monday

Brown and Deaver sustained torn ACLs during preseason in August and were lost for the season. Both players sat out the 2012 season as well due to ACL injuries and Brown also tore the ACL and MCL in his right knee in November 2010.

Deaver led all ACC tight ends in receptions last season and was named to the conference's third team. Brown was a preseason 2014 All-ACC selection and has been described as the vocal leader and "heart" of Duke's defense. 

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Brown said his inclination after sustaining the injury was to not return for another season, but he spent time with Deaver and the two "helped each other through the process" before Brown decided to seek eligibility to return. 

"It's a huge thing for our program, for those guys and their confidence. You never want to see anybody go out like that after working this hard," quarterback Anthony Boone told ESPN.

Deaver had 600 receiving yards and four touchdowns in 2013, while Brown recorded 120 tackles and two interceptions.

The No. 19 Blue Devils are 8-1 this season, their only loss coming to Miami on Sept. 27. They host Virginia Tech on Saturday. 

- Molly Geary

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