Michigan LB Antonio Poole No Longer on Playing Roster Due to Medical Reasons
Michigan linebacker Antonio Poole, a redshirt sophomore with a troublesome injury history, was left of the team's playing roster due to medical reasons.
UPDATE: Wednesday, July 24, 1:45 p.m. EDT
Elaborating on earlier reports, Hoke confirmed that Poole has retired for medical reasons. According to MLive.com's Kyle Meinke, he will stay on with the team as a student assistant this season:
Hoke said LB Antonio Poole's career is over (injury). He'll be a student-assistant this year.— Kyle Meinke (@kmeinke) July 24, 2013
--End of Update--
At Big Ten media days in Chicago, ESPN's Michael Rothstein noticed Poole's absence from Michigan's media guide:
Linebacker Antonio Poole is not listed in the Michigan football media guide. Checking on his status.— Michael Rothstein (@mikerothstein) July 24, 2013
MLive.com writer Kyle Meinke followed up with a spokesman, who said that Poole was omitted for medical reasons, but has not officially left the program:
Spokesman clarifies: Antonio Poole isn't on playing roster due to medical reasons, but has not left the team.— Kyle Meinke (@kmeinke) July 24, 2013
In 2011, Poole was a 4-star recruit coming out of Winton Woods High School (Cincinnati, Ohio), but injuries have derailed the early portion of his career. He was forced to take a redshirt and miss all of last season after badly tearing a pectoral muscle.
He had momentum on his side after a good spring game last year, but in the wake of his injury, Poole has become a less integral part of Michigan's future. But his health still would have provided Michigan much-needed depth at the linebacker position.
Especially given Jake Ryan's ACL injury and the doubt surrounding his 2013 season. Ryan, perhaps the Wolverine's best defensive player, tore his ACL in the spring and will be sidelined until October—at the absolute minimum.
Poole wasn't necessarily being counted on to help replace Ryan, but he was likely to play a small role. And now Michigan appears just one Cameron Gordon or Desmond Morgan injury away from being perilously thin at linebacker.
Specifics on the nature of Poole's injury are not yet available, but head coach Brady Hoke is expected to address them when he takes the podium at 12:30 p.m. ET.
Check back for updates throughout the day.
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