One of the top 2020 CFL draft prospects has suffered a season-ending knee injury.

University of North Carolina senior Patrice Rene will miss the rest of the NCAA season with a torn ACL in his right knee. The injury happened during the Tar Heels’ 28-25 victory over the University of Miami on Saturday.

Rene did not take a redshirt in his freshman season. This means he could choose to return to the Tar Heels next year as a redshirt senior, delaying his draft year until 2021.

The star cornerback has appeared in 35 games with the Tar Heels — starting 21 — over the past four seasons, recording 75 tackles, ten pass deflections, two interceptions, and one fumble recovery.

The Ottawa native attended high school in Virginia and was a four-star recruit before landing at UNC. The six-foot-two, 208-pound cover man was expected to be a late-round selection in next year’s NFL draft.

Rene’s injury is the same as the one Jonathan Kongbo suffered last year as a senior at the University of Tennessee.

Kongbo’s NFL interest waned due to the injury, but he was still selected fifth overall by the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in the CFL draft back in May. Kongbo has dressed for six games with the Bombers this season, recording nine tackles.

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John Hodge
John Hodge is a CFL insider and draft analyst who has been covering the league since 2014. He is a two-time finalist in the Jon Gott lookalike contest.