A graduate assistant coach with the Irish football team is taking a leave of absence to deal with what he calls a very treatable form of cancer.

Kyle McCarthy is in his first year as a grad assistant, working with the defensive secondary.

He was a team captain in 2009, and had 240 career tackles.

He also played in 12 games over two seasons for the Denver Broncos.

McCarthy says he is confident of a full recovery. He posted the following over several tweets:

"A few weeks ago I was diagnosed with a very treatable form of cancer. Yesterday, I began chemotherapy as the next step in eliminating this disease. I'm truly blessed to have such amazing love and support from family and friends. Thank you to everyone for your thoughts and prayers over the last few weeks. I expect a full recovery and look forward to returning to the team during and after my treatment. Go Irish!"