Notre Dame has lost starting quarterback Dayne Crist after surgery on his left knee on Sunday to repair a torn tendon ended his season, the Irish head coach Brian Kelly told the press on Monday.

Crist's expected to be in recovery mode for six months, which could amend or even halt his spring practice in 2011.

Crist was injured during a 29-yard run in the first quarter of Saturday's 28-27 loss to Tulsa. Sent to the locker room during the first half, Crist watched the second half of the game on crutches.

Freshman Tommy Rees replaced Crist in the Tulsa game and is now expected to start for the Irish in November 13 against Utah. Meanwhile the Irish have an open date this coming Saturday.

Coach Kelly told the press: "I talked to him last night an I told him essentially, ‘Sometimes we look for answers and sometimes there are no answers.' There's just sometimes accidents occur and his situation was a non-contact injury.

"The second thing I said is ‘You've been through this before. You don't want to go through it again, but at least you've already exhibited the strength — the mental and physical toughness — to get through this. And you're going to have to call on that to get through it again.'"