FootballSports

Zach Okun retiring for medical reasons



Sophomore offensive lineman Zach Okun is medically retiring from football, as first reported by 247sports. Okun, a former 4-star recruit played sparingly in his two seasons with the Ducks.

He suffered a possible spinal injury during fall camp last year and was taken to PeaceHealth Sacred Heart Medical Center at Riverbend where he underwent an MRI. Luckily for Okun, the diagnosis was “a concussion and some other thing,” he told the Register-Guard after the incident.

It’s unclear if the past injury is the reason for his retirement.

When asked about Okun’s retirement at practice on Tuesday, head coach Willie Taggart had little to say about the matter.

“It’s more medical,” Taggart said. “I’ll leave that to Zach. It’s more personal than anything.”

After initial reports of Okun’s retirement emerged, he took to twitter to formally announce his retirement. “After a long discussion with the medical professional that the University of Oregon gave me access to, as well as my family, I have decided to step away from the game of football,” he wrote in a statement. “I have suffered from anxiety and depression, and after months of trial and error with my teammates, our doctor and I decided that retiring from football is my best chance to get these things under control.”

Okun, a former U.S. Army All-American, enrolled at Oregon winter term of 2015 and redshirted his freshman year. He saw his first in-game action as a Duck against USC in the 2016 season.

Follow Gus Morris on Twitter @JustGusMorris

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Gus Morris

Gus Morris

Gus Morris covers Oregon football, basketball and women's golf for the Emerald. Caffeine addict. Lover of Bay Area sports. I know words, I have the best words.