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Friday, January 3
Updated: January 6, 6:03 PM ET
McGahee has torn left ACL, needs surgery

Associated Press

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Willis McGahee wasn't expected to return to Miami next season. Now he might not have a choice.

Willis McGahee
Willis McGahee is helped off the field after possibly damaging knee ligaments in the fourth.

The All-American running back injured his left knee early in the fourth quarter of the Hurricanes' 31-24 double-overtime loss to Ohio State in the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl on Friday night.

The Miami sports information department said Saturday that McGahee has a torn left ACL and will undergo surgery Sunday.

The injury could prevent him from entering the NFL draft in April and might even keep him sidelined for part of next season with the Hurricanes.

McGahee, a sophomore who ran for a school-record 1,686 yards and 27 touchdowns this season, was a finalist for the Heisman Trophy as the nation's most outstanding player, the Doak Walker Award as the nation's top running back and the Walter Camp Player of the Year award.

McGahee played fullback last season in the Rose Bowl, but took over the starting tailback spot when Frank Gore tore ligaments in his knee.

McGahee injured his knee with 11:39 remaining in the fourth quarter, taking a screen pass from Ken Dorsey on third-and-10 from the Ohio State 35 and getting hit by Will Allen for a 2-yard loss.

McGahee was on his back with trainers around him, then was helped from the field, unable to put any weight on his left leg. He was taken on a cart to the locker room.

McGahee carried 20 times for 67 yards, including a 9-yard touchdown run that cut Ohio State's lead to 17-14 with 2:11 left in the third quarter. He also threw a key block on Dorsey's 25-yard touchdown pass to Roscoe Parrish in the first quarter.

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