"Its sad, sad news," coach Mark Richt said Sunday night.
The junior running back left Georgia’s 34-7 win in the fourth quarter after a big pileup on a six-yard run. The injury concluded Gurley’s night as he left the stadium shortly after having his left knee inspected by Georgia’s medical team.
Soon thereafter, Gurley sat on a trainer’s bench with his injured knee wrapped with ice - out of the game. Its likely the last time Gurley will slip on Silver Britches for the Bulldogs. The highly-touted running back will almost certainly opt out of his final year of eligibility to play in the NFL.
Richt didn't say if Gurley would return to Athens for his final season. That move is not expected.
"I don’t know that answer,” Richt said. “I don’t want to speak for him.”
Gurley, for his part, broke his silence on Twitter: "No Pain, No Gain."
Richt added that Gurley, for the most part, had a positive outlook about the future.
"He seems to be handling it very well," Richt said.
Its a disappointing end to a tumultuous season for Gurley.
After running to the front of the Heisman pack, Gurley was suspended four games for accepting $3,000 for signing memorabilia. The saga was the news of college football for weeks as speculation ran about when Gurley would return. Debate also raged nationally on if the NCAA’s bylaws concerning a player being able to profit off his own likeness was outdated or too restrictive.
Nonetheless, Gurley sat out as Georgia moved through much of October without its best player. That’s when freshman Nick Chubb burst onto the scene. Still, the Bulldogs arrived in Athens for their annual rivalry game with Auburn still in the SEC race even without Gurley playing.
Gurley, seizing the moment of his return at the start of the Auburn contest, took Georgia’s first kickoff return the 105 yards from end zone to end zone. Sanford Stadium exploded. But the return was called back for holding.
Perhaps that best sums up Todd Gurley’s 2014 season - just as it was taking off it was taken away.