Katenda went permanently blind in his right eye after taking a shot during a July pickup game, and since he's not yet approved by the NCAA Clearinghouse because of grades and academic requirements (Notre Dame is a lofty school to get into, after all), his chance to play D-I basketball may already be over.
"It was just the perfect storm, he's coming down with a rebound and the guy kind of came up and was going for the ball and got him on an angle where it really caused an injury," Irish coach Mike Brey said.
"The injury, as it was explained to me, the trauma (caused) a build-up of blood and the pressure became so bad behind the eye and that severed the optical nerve. There's no surgery that fixes a severed optical nerve. Modern medicine doesn't have that yet."
Brey said doctors discovered the severed optical nerve when they performed a procedure to allieviate the pressure on the eye. The Irish coach said he learned of the injury July 8, right at the outset of a critical summer recruiting window, and has taken the news perhaps even harder than Katenda.