North Carolina offensive lineman Tommy Hatton is retiring from football after just two seasons due to concussions.
Hatton suffered his fourth concussion in training camp in August, and it forced him to miss the entire 2017 season. He started eight games in 2016 and played in nine that year.
He posted on Instagram that he can’t continue to play due to the number of serious concussions.
“Since I been a sophomore in high school over my bed has read ” I will play in the NFL.” Unfortunately that dream will not be able to be achieved. On August 3rd, I received a routine hit in practice that left me hospitalized and in a concussion state for close to four months. Unfortunately this was not my first concussion but rather my fourth. During this time I did all types of therapies to try and subside my concussion symptoms so that I could return to the field in 2018. After meeting with some of the best neurologist in the nation I have decided that I will medically retire from football. When people ask me will I miss football the answer is simply YES. I gave everything to this game since I been a little boy, but life has a way of throwing you curveballs at the most unexpected times. I can leave football knowing that I gave everything that I had and more in order to help my team win on game day. I was never the most talented player, but the one thing that I always had was heart and it took me far in this game.
“So unfortunately I won’t be playing on Sundays and it will hurt for a little bit but I will take all these lessons that football has taught me and apply it to whatever life throws at me. Thanks to everyone who has supported me over the years, especially the great people of New Jersey, your guys support has been so paramount to my success and I would not be here with out you all. I want to thank Coach Fedora and his staff for believing in me and offering me a scholarship to play football at the University of North Carolina. Thanks to all the great teammates that I have had over the years I love you all and thanks for making football the best experience of my life.”Advertisement
Hatton likely would’ve been a starter next season, and Larry Fedora’s team already lost four starting linemen to graduation.
Hatton was a four-star guard coming out of high school, and he also had offers from South Carolina and Virginia Tech.