Quarterback Dayne Crist is out for the season after undergoing knee surgery Sunday. Starting running back Armando Allen also is out for the season with torn cartilage on both sides of his hip. Freshman Prince Shembo, a contributor mostly on special teams, suffered a concussion.
That leaves Notre Dame without three of its four most productive offensive players: Crist, Allen and tight end Kyle Rudolph, who is out for the season after surgery to repair a torn hamstring. Wide receiver Michael Floyd missed the Navy game with a pulled hamstring, but started against Tulsa on Saturday and had 11 receptions for 104 yards and two touchdowns.
''He played hard, but he did not have that second gear that he had earlier in the year,'' Kelly said.
Allen dressed for the Tulsa game, but was unable to play. ''We dressed him so he could run out of the tunnel one last time,'' Kelly said. ''We were pretty certain he was not going to be able to play again.''
He added that the staff believes part of Allen's injury ''was a pre-existing condition.''
Allen is Notre Dame's leading rusher with 534 yards and two touchdowns on 107 carries (4.8 yards per carry). He also has 17 receptions for 138 yards (8.1 yards per catch). Sophomore Cierre Wood, who gained 58 yards on 16 carries against Tulsa, is expected to remain the starter.