A Rutgers University defensive tackle suffered a spinal-cord injury during the Scarlet Knights' overtime victory over Army on Saturday, and currently has no movement below his neck, school officials said today.
"We want to say thank you to everyone for all of your prayers, kind words, and well wishes," the LeGrand family said in a statement. "We appreciate every single thought. Eric is in good spirits and we are praying for a full recovery."
"Eric, his family and the Rutgers Football family believe he will recover," said Rutgers head football coach Greg Schiano. "We ask our fans and the entire Rutgers community to believe and pray for Eric as he begins the recovery process."
Schiano told the players that there will be a schedule for them to see Eric.
"I have to lead by example," team captain Charlie Noonan.
"It's all tough stuff, yes," Schiano said. "When you coach these kids, they're your kids. That is the thing I don't know if everybody gets. It's not pro football. Those are your kids. You're raising them. You're finishing the job for their parents, so it's tough."
LeGrand, an Avenel resident who played at Colonia High School, was injured making a tackle on Malcolm Brown at the Army 25. He seemed to move his head immediately after the play but did not move after that as trainers from Rutgers (4-2) rushed the field to attend to him.
Players from both teams took a knee while LeGrand was being treated.