Cal middle linebacker Nathan Broussard tears ACL again, will miss second straight season

Cal middle linebacker Nathan Broussard tears ACL again, will miss second straight season

Nathan Broussard, Cal’s projected starter at middle linebacker, will miss the 2014 season after tearing his ACL during practice.

The injury is a tough blow for Broussard, who suffered the same injury to the same knee in a scrimmage last fall, causing him to miss all of the 2013 season. Cal head coach Sonny Dykes told reporters Wednesday that Broussard, a redshirt junior, had “tweaked” the knee during a non-contact drill recently. Tests later confirmed that he tore his ACL again.

After redshirting his first year on campus in 2011, Broussard played in 11 games as a redshirt freshman in 2012 and made four starts. Broussard was very productive that season, recording 18 tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss and three sacks.

In addition to Broussard, two other Cal players went down with severe injuries in practice this week.

Dykes said that true freshman safety Quentin Tartabull, a three-star recruit from Mission Hills, Calif., also tore the ACL in his left knee Wednesday morning. According to the Contra Costa Times, Tartabull was expected to contribute to the Golden Bears secondary this season. The 6-foot, 190-pound Tartabull missed most of his senior season in high school because of a knee injury, per the San Francisco Chronicle.

On the other side of the ball, sophomore running back Jeffrey Coprich fractured his foot in practice on Tuesday. Coprich, a 5-foot-8, 175-pound sophomore, ran for 156 yards on 40 carries in 2013.

Cal’s season opens up on the road at Northwestern on August 30. The Golden Bears went 1-11 in 2013.

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Sam Cooper is a contributor for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!