When Cyler Miles decided to take what was described as a "leave of absence" from the football team back in March, it came as a bit of a shock as he appeared to have a firm grasp on the starting quarterback position for the Huskies. Word started to circulate shortly after that he was unlikely to return, though the reasons why were unknown. When the team announced the signing a couple of weeks ago of JC transfer Tony Rodriguez it seemed like confirmation that Miles was indeed not likely to return to the team, so today's announcement that this is indeed the case is not a surprise. The reason however is a surprise, and in many ways it answers a lot of the talk that has surrounded Miles since his arrival at the UW - he has a chronic hip injury, one that is bad enough that medical personnel have advised him to discontinue playing football.
A highly recruited prospect out of Mullen H.S. in Denver, CO, Miles battled fellow 2012 signee Jeff Lindquist for the backup job at QB in 2013 behind Keith Price and won, appearing in 8 games (including a memorable start at Oregon State) and showing some promise with his feet and his accuracy. And despite a well-publicized incident following the Seattle Seahawks' Super Bowl victory the following February that resulted in Miles having to sit out all of spring practices under new coach Chris Petersen - as well as the first game of the 2014 season - he quickly ascended to the starting role from game 2 onward, missing only the Arizona State game due to a concussion.
As noted by Christian Caple on Twitter, Miles has had hip issues for much of his career, so this news probably shouldn't come as a big shock for those that are familiar with his playing history. It should also put his throwing motion - a subject of much debate among Husky fans - into greater context.
From those of us here at the Dawg Pound, our best wishes go out to Miles as this must have been a difficult decision, and we hope to see him get his UW degree soon.
Here is the official press release from the UW:
SEATTLE – A chronic hip injury has forced Washington quarterback Cyler Miles to retire from college football, head coach Chris Petersen announced today. Medical personnel have advised Miles that it would be against his best interest to continue to play on the injury, which has persisted throughout his career.
Miles, who would have been a fourth-year junior this coming fall, started 12 games for the Huskies last season and played in a total of 20 games during his UW career.
"I am grateful to Coach Petersen and his staff for all the opportunities I have been given here at Washington," Miles said. "I am disappointed that my hip injuries will not allow me to continue playing, but I am committed to earning my UW degree and will leave the program with many great friendships and valuable lessons learned."
As with all medical retirements, Miles can remain on scholarship through the completion of his undergraduate degree, but will not count against the NCAA limit of 85 scholarship players on the roster.
"I am pleased that Cyler will remain committed to the pursuit of his UW degree, even though his injuries will keep him from competing on the football field," Petersen said. "We will continue to support him and wish him the best in this next phase of his life."