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Michigan Recruit Quits Over Health, Keeps Scholarship

Andy Berg

Michigan football 2020 quarterback commit JD Johnson has been forced by a heart condition to retire from football, but he’ll get to keep his scholarship.

Johnson posted to twitter this week, saying a birth defect that was diagnosed when he was 12 called a coarctation of the aorta was the reason he would be giving up football. Johnson was told that he did not meet the clearance standard to continue playing a contact sport for fear that his aorta could rupture, or that not enough blood would get to his brain, causing a field stroke. 

While Johnson won’t be able to play football, he says he’ll still be attending Michigan on scholarship, thanks to head coach Jim Harbaugh.

“Coach Harbaugh called after receiving the news of my test results,” Johnson wrote. “Unsure and scared to what the conversation was going to be, Coach, without hesitation, said that my scholarship would be honored and offered me a position to join the Wolverine staff and help anyway I can.

“I am witness to Coach Harbaugh’s character and integrity in a situation where he has every reason to tell me, ‘Good luck with your future.’ He means what he says, and stands behind his commitments, when he could have taken the easy way out. He demonstrated a high level of loyalty to a player that will never throw a touchdown pass for him.”

Johnson’s departure leaves Michigan without any quarterback prospects in the class of 2020, according to the USA Today.

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