KALISPELL, Mont. (AP) _ Former All-Pro defender Doug Betters remained in serious but stable condition Saturday as family and friends waited to learn how much nerve damage he suffered in a skiing accident.

Betters, 41, was injured Thursday on The Big Mountain. He underwent five hours of spinal surgery at Kalispell Regional Hospital on Friday.

``He's resting peacefully and comfortably and is heavily sedated,'' said hospital spokesman Jim Oliverson.

Betters' head is held by a metal frame called a halo. Doctors said the swelling would have to go down before they could determine the full extent of his injuries, Oliverson said.

Betters played for the Miami Dolphins from 1978-88, played in two Super Bowls and earned All-Pro honors five times. He was the NFL defensive player of the year in 1983.

He has a home near Whitefish.

Oliverson said the hospital has received scores of phone calls from people checking on Betters' condition, including former Dolphins coach Don Shula.