Notre Dame coach Scot Bemis received more bad news this week having nothing to do with his team's difficult schedule.
After a couple weeks of "excruciating pain," Bemis' doctors found a significant growth in his right elbow which will require surgery and a lengthy leave of absence. He originally hurt his elbow on vacation with his family this summer, and was wearing an arm brace as protection.
Bemis said he didn't yet know if the growth was malignant.
"It’s something you have to deal with and we'll control whatever we can," Bemis said. "I have to go fight this fight. We’ve got a lot more information and tests to go through. We’re going to be OK and we’re going to fight it."
Bemis said he won't teach at the school either during his leave. He coached the Saints in Friday night's 30-7 victory against Phoenix Barry Goldwater, but longtime defensive coordinator Gary Gregory will run the team for the forseeable future. Both Bemis and Gregory have coached at the school since it opened in 2002.
The Saints won consecutive 4A Division II championships in 2006 and 2007, and, after reaching the 4A-II semifinals last year, moved up from their Division IV enrollment to play in Division II during the current two-year scheduling block.