James Hurst Injury: Updates on North Carolina OT's Leg and Return

Andrew GouldFeatured ColumnistDecember 28, 2013

COLUMBIA, SC - AUGUST 29:  James Hurst
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images

Offensive lineman James Hurst suffered a serious leg injury during North Carolina's Belk Bowl victory over Cincinnati.

The senior left tackle exited his final college game on Saturday, Dec. 28 in clear pain, and the initial news is not good regarding the pro prospect.

The News & Observer's Andrew Carter was informed that Hurst broke his leg, but it was not displaced.

James Hurst has a broken left leg, #UNC spokesman tells us in the press box. "Non-displaced," though. Fractured fibula.

— Andrew Carter (@_andrewcarter) December 29, 2013

Carter added that the news could have been worse, but there is currently no timeline for his healing period.

In other words, Hurst's broken leg could have been worse. Still not good, obviously. No word on how long recovery process is expected to be.

— Andrew Carter (@_andrewcarter) December 29, 2013

Hurst, who earned the starting job during his freshman year, started the season by stymieing highly touted South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney in the season opener. 

The timing could not be any worse for the 6'7", 305-pound lineman. The NFL draft is coming soon, and fear of a significant ailment could send Hurst's draft stock plummeting.

Stay tuned for updates on the severity of Hurst's leg injury.