Pitt redshirt senior defensive end and preseason All-America candidate Greg Romeus will have surgery on a lower-back disc Thursday, head coach Dave Wannstedt announced on Tuesday.
The surgery will keep Romeus out indefinitely.
"Our top priority is doing what is best for Greg," Wannstedt said in a press release. "After consulting with him, his family and our medical staff, it was determined that immediate surgery is the best option for Greg both personally and athletically.
"We expect him to have a full recovery and return for the conclusion of the season."
Romeus missed virtually all of training camp due to back spasms, but he returned to practice prior to the season-opener at Utah. In that game, he made four tackles and one pass deflection.
Romeus did not play in Saturday's 38-16 win over New Hampshire and was not on the sideline. Wannstedt said after the game that Romeus was excused "for personal reasons."
Romeus was named the 2009 Big East Co-Defensive Player of the Year and first-team All-Big East after he led Pitt with eight sacks. He was a finalist for the 2009 Ted Hendricks Defensive End of the Year Award and was named to the preseason watch list for the Chuck Bednarik Award, which honor's the nation's top defensive player.
In the New Hampshire game, redshirt junior defensive end Brandon Lindsey made his first career start and recorded four tackles and two sacks. Pitt's defensive line logged six sacks against the Wildcats. Senior end Jabaal Sheard had one sack and redshirt junior tackle Chas Alecxih had three.
"We're definitely going to miss Greg," Sheard said after the game. "He's a leader, he pushes us, and we're definitely going to miss him. But with guys like Brandon and Chas stepping up and having a big game today, I think we'll be fine without him until he gets back."
In addition to Sheard and Lindsey, Pitt used redshirt senior Nate Nix and redshirt junior Justin Hargrove at defensive end against New Hampshire.