Just when it seemed as if things couldn't get worse for USC, star wide receiver Marqise Lee suffered a left knee injury at the end of an 18-yard punt return early in the fourth quarter against Arizona State on Saturday night.
Lee was carried to the sideline by teammates, unable to put any weight on his left leg. As doctors examined him, a visibly distraught Lee covered his face with a towel. However, Lee later told ESPN sideline reporter Allison Williams he was "thumbs up" when asked about the extent of the injury while being carted to the locker room.
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The 6-foot, 195-pound junior is widely regarded as the top wide receiver in college football and the top underclassman at the position should he declare for the 2014 NFL Draft. The Blietnikoff Award winner and unanimous All-America last season, Lee took out a multi-million dollar insurance policy before the start of this season.
Lee had caught seven passes for 92 yards before he was hurt to become the Trojans' all-time leader in receiving yards, breaking the record of 3,201 yards previously held by Johnnie Morton. Lee did so in only 29 career games.
The injury leaves USC with just two scholarship receivers in sophomore Nelson Agholor and redshirt sophomore Victor Blackwell.