Cedar Cliff tight end Adam Breneman ran one of his crisp routes over the middle and made another seemingly normal catch during a 7-on-7 game against East Pennsboro on Thursday.
Nobody hit Breneman. Yet this play had a painful ending.
Breneman landed on his right foot and his knee buckled. He grimaced and gingerly exited West Shore Stadium.
An MRI on Friday confirmed Brenemans worst suspicion: His senior season ended before it started.
Breneman, the gem of Penn States 2013 recruiting class, suffered a torn right ACL. The injury will force him to miss his senior football and basketball seasons.
I cant put into words how I feel, Cedar Cliff coach Jim Cantafio said Friday. I have been coaching football for a long time, and this is one of the worst days in my coaching career.
The injury is the first major setback in Brenemans prolific career. He appeared in every football game the past three years, and a 72-catch, 1,120-yard junior season and 6-foot-5, 230-pound frame turned Breneman into the nations top tight end and 27th overall recruit, according to Rivals.com.
Brian Breneman said his son will meet with Penn State director of athletic medicine Dr. Wayne Sebastianelli on Monday. Brian said Sebastianelli will perform the surgery when the swelling in Adams knee subsides. If he undergoes a glitch-free recovery, Adam will resume football-related activities next spring.
Its unfortunate, Brian said, but its not the end of the world. He will work through it and do the rehab that has to do.
Brian said his son has handled the ordeal well.
Obviously hes disappointed because he wanted to play with his teammates his senior season, Brian said. But hes in pretty good spirits. He has accepted the fact that this happened. Hes very passionate about doing what he has to do to get back on the field. Fortunately, this happened in June and hes still a year away from actually being at Penn State.
Cantafio learned the extent of Adams injury while golfing Friday morning at Cool Creek Golf Club in York County. He somberly walked off the course after speaking with Brian Breneman.
Cantafio said Adam was poised for a big senior season. The Colts stable of talented offensive players also includes heralded junior quarterback Andrew Ford.
Those two kids were going to be unstoppable, Cantafio said. Adam was looking awesome and now hes not going to have a chance to get on a high school field again. It makes you sick.
Brian said Adam might explore the possibility of enrolling in Penn State next January. Those close to Adam expect to see an even stronger tight end in the future.
By September 2013, hes going to be 200 percent better, Cantafio said. You dont have to worry about that.
Guy Cipriano can be reached at 231-4643. Follow him on Twitter @cdtguy