Potential First-Round Pick Justyn Ross to Miss 2020 After Spinal Surgery

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Clemson Tigers junior wide receiver Justyn Ross has been ruled out for the 2020 college football season after head coach Dabo Swinney announced that he will undergo surgery for a congenital fusion in his back and spine on Friday.

Swinney said during a press conference on Monday that Ross was found to have the injury following an X-Ray after he was slow to get up in a spring practice and had stinger symptoms. 

The injury is something he was born with and doctors are "very concerned." 

Swinney added that it's no guarantee Ross, a projected 2021 top-10 NFL Draft pick, can ever play football again.

"He'll have a decision to make next January, whether to enter the 2021 NFL Combine or return to school," Swinney said. "But there is no guarantee he can play football again. But Justyn is doing great. He's in great spirits and so is his mom. They've been great." 

Ross had been one of the nation's top receivers the last two years, racking up 1,000 receiving yards as a freshman and a team-high 66 receptions as a sophomore along with 865 yards and eight touchdowns. 

Depending on how he recovers, he could still be one of the top receivers selected in the 2021 draft. 

Ross was expected to be the Tigers top offensive weapon in 2021 and it's now uncertain whether he will ever suit up again. 

"We have spent a lot of time and doctors have done a wonderful job trying to get the best information," Swinney said. "One of the top neurosurgeons in the country, who is one of the main NFL guys, has stepped up and really been great in the process with Justyn. He'll fly up there on Thursday and have surgery Friday and we will go from there."

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