PROVO — The BYU basketball program’s worst fears were confirmed Wednesday when an MRI revealed that guard Kyle Collinsworth has suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee.
Due to the injury, Collinsworth’s sensational sophomore season has come to a bitter end.
BYU made the announcement Wednesday night.
The loss of Collinsworth is a major setback for the Cougars, who are preparing for the postseason and hoping for an NCAA tournament berth.
Collinsworth, BYU’s most versatile player, will undergo season-ending surgery early next week to repair the torn ACL. It is anticipated that Collinsworth will make a complete recovery and be ready for practice next fall.
Early in the second half of the Cougars’ loss to Gonzaga in the West Coast Conference championship game Tuesday night, Collinsworth landed awkwardly on his right leg and remained on the floor for several moments, writhing in pain before he was helped to the locker room.
Later, Collinsworth returned to the bench with his right leg heavily wrapped.
During the WCC tournament, Collinsworth — who was named to the All-WCC first team and the all-tournament team — averaged 18 points and 11.3 rebounds while shooting 55 percent from the floor. He recorded career highs in points (23) and rebounds (16) in a quarterfinal victory over Loyola Marymount last Saturday.
For the season, Collinsworth led BYU in rebounding (8.1 per game) and assists (4.6 per game). He was No. 2 on the team in scoring (14.0 per game) and steals (1.7 per game). Collinsworth returned home from an LDS mission to Russia last spring.
Last month at St. Mary’s, Collinsworth injured the same knee, and heard a popping sound in the knee. But he later returned to that game and played in every contest that followed.
“It’s a miracle, really,” he told the Deseret News after the win over LMU last Saturday. “When I went down I thought my season was over. People don’t know what it's been like to get my knee ready. I’ve been going through a process, spending hours waking up early to go to a pool, getting treatments just to get my knee ready. It still isn’t back all the way and at times today I found myself going up on one leg, protecting the other.”
Collinsworth helped the Cougars reach the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament as a freshman in 2011. Unfortunately for Collinsworth and BYU, a knee injury will prevent him from playing in this postseason.