Prosise, Russell out for No. 4 Irish vs. No. 13 Stanford
SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) Notre Dame's leading rusher C.J. Prosise is doubtful with a sprained ankle for the biggest game of the season, when the fourth-ranked Fighting Irish play No. 13 Stanford on Saturday with a college football playoff berth on the line.
Cornerback KeiVarae Russell, the team's second-leading tackler, is out for the game with a broken right leg.
Prosise has a high ankle sprain. The injury occurred when his left foot got caught under Boston College defensive lineman Connor Wujciak as he was being tackled in the second quarter of Saturday's 19-16 win.
Coach Brian Kelly said Sunday that Prosise, who has rushed for 1,029 yards, is doubtful. He will be replaced by freshman Josh Adams, who has three 100-yard rushing games and has 592 yards rushing, although he was held for 39 yards on 13 carries against the Eagles with a fumble on the 3-yard line.
Kelly said another freshman running back, Dexter Williams, is going to need to contribute against Stanford (9-2) and quarterback DeShone Kizer also needs to help with the running game.
''This is a one game all in,'' Kelly said. ''We'll do whatever is necessary to provide the kind of running game that is necessary. So it's all hands on deck in this situation.''
Russell broke a bone in his leg late in the fourth quarter when he hit running back Tyler Rouse hard, knocking the ball loose with 70 seconds left. Kelly said Russell was scheduled to have surgery Sunday evening to have a rod inserted. Kelly said he doesn't believe Russell will be ready for a bowl game or a first-round playoff game, but said he might be ready to play if the Irish (10-1) make it to the national championship game.
''He's one of those kids you hate to lose. He's given so much to the program. We'll have to regroup,'' Kelly said.
Devin Butler, Nick Watkins and Nick Coleman likely will divide time replacing Russell, Kelly said. Butler, a junior with two career starts, is the most experienced.
Nose guard Daniel Cage, who missed the past two games with a concussion, is expected to return. Linebacker James Onwualu, who with a sprained medial collateral ligament in his left knee, is expected to miss the game.
The Irish previously have lost seven players to what Kelly has described as season-ending injuries.
AP college football website: collegefootball.ap.org