CHAPEL HILL — North Carolina linebacker Darius Lipford reinjured his left ACL during a rehab session and will undergo reconstructive surgery that will force him to miss the 2012 season, the university announced on Thursday.
Lipford originally suffered the injury during the Tar Heels loss on Dec. 26 against Missouri in the Independence Bowl. He reinjured his knee last week. Lipfords surgery is scheduled for August.
Lipford, who didnt participate in spring practice because of the injury, will have two years of eligibility remaining. He started four games during the 2011 season, and was in the regular rotation at outside linebacker. He finished his sophomore season with 42 tackles.
Had he been healthy, Lipford likely would have competed for a starting position in coach Larry Fedoras revamped defense. Lipfords best chance to start likely would have come at one of the Tar Heels new hybrid defensive positions, perhaps as a combination linebacker and defensive back. Because he did not participate in spring practice, Lipford was never listed on Fedoras tentative spring depth chart.