Michigan defensive back Courtney Avery, a contributing member of the secondary and a senior team captain, will miss the first two weeks of action with a knee injury.
Per Nick Baumgardner of MLive.com:
Coach Brady Hoke announced Monday that senior defensive back Courtney Avery will miss two weeks after receiving arthroscopic knee surgery on Saturday.
Hoke said the procedure was done to clean up some cartilage in Avery's knee, and noted that the senior is in good spirits and will "be back soon."
According to the program's official Twitter, Avery—who has never missed a game—said it will be weird to watch from the sideline:
"It's going to be weird not being out there, I haven't a missed a game in my entire career." - Courtney Avery pic.twitter.com/zibHc6wwca— Michigan Football (@umichfootball) August 26, 2013
The injury leaves Michigan without two of its four team captains for the first two weeks. Avery joins linebacker Jake Ryan, who is still recovering from a spring ACL tear, as leaders who are on the shelf.
Offensive tackle Taylor Lewan and linebacker Cam Gordon are the two captains still healthy enough to suit up.
Playing without Avery won't mean much in Week 1, when the Wolverines host Central Michigan. But Notre Dame marches into the Big House in Week 2 for a game, in which each and every missing player will be felt ten-fold.
Though a cornerback for most of his career, Avery was slated to start at free safety in 2013. He appeared in all 13 games last season (starting five of them) and has 81 tackles and three interceptions in his career.
Michigan, fortunately, has some capable replacements on its two-deep. Sophomore Jarrod Wilson, who appeared in 10 games as a freshman and shows plenty of upside, will be given the nod at free safety in Avery's absence.
Even if he's forced to miss the Notre Dame game, the relative prognosis of Avery's injury is good news. Foreboding terms like "knee surgery" often mean much longer absences.
He should have time to ease back into action and still be ready to go full speed during Big Ten play.