Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News
SALT LAKE CITY — Utah quarterback Jordan Wynn is calling it a career. The junior, who injured his left shoulder in Friday's 27-20 overtime loss at Utah State, informed head coach Kyle Whittingham of his decision Monday morning.
"He's going to move on to life after football," Whittingham said."He's fought the good fight and he's come back. But this is the fourth time he has injured his shoulder and enough is enough."
Wynn's latest injury came with 1:04 remaining in the first half at USU when he was hit while throwing an incomplete pass. Although initial X-rays were negative, it now appears his non-throwing shoulder will require surgery. Wynn has had three shoulder operations (two on his left, one on his right) since the spring of 2010.
"He's talked to his father and he's going to hang up the football," Whittingham said, while praising Wynn for his toughness and resiliency. "We're all on the same page. If he's my son, I'd probably encourage him to do the same thing. So that's where we're at."
Wynn retires as one of just 11 quarterbacks in school history to pass for 4,000 yards, ranking eighth overall with 4,637. His 33 touchdown passes rank sixth.
"He's a tough kid and I want to reiterate that we appreciate what he's done for us and what he's given the program," Whittingham said.
Wynn was 14-7 as Utah's starter, winning the job over the final five games of 2009. He capped the best season in school history by a true freshman quarterback (104-of-179 passing for 1,329 yards and eight touchdowns) with MVP honors in the Poinsettia Bowl.
As a sophomore, Wynn completed 186-of-299 throws for 2,334 yards and 17 touchdowns in 10 starts. In 2011, he connected on 66 of his 116 passes for 727 yards and six scores before suffering a season-ending shoulder injury midway through the fourth game of the season.
Hays took over and went 6-3 as a replacement starter. Wynn, however, won the job back this season after undergoing extensive rehab on his surgically repaired shoulder. He received a medical redshirt extension from the NCAA, giving him two seasons of eligibility.
In his final two starts, Wynn was a combined 25-of-38 passing for 247 yards and two touchdowns.
"There's still some medical tests that have to be made. (But) it looks pretty obvious and plain he's going to need surgery," Whittingham said. "I guess until it actually happens, nothing is ever a done deal. But that is the direction that everybody at this point and time is going to go."
Although Wynn has fought hard in coming back from injury in the past, Whittingham noted that he's just ready to move on this time around. The former Oceanside (Calif.) High School star has already earned a degree in economics.
"That's the reason that you're here," Whittingham said. "To do that in 3 1/2 years is remarkable."
Wynn will remain in school (working toward a second bachelor's degree) and stay with the team for the remainder of the season. He's already spoken with Whittingham about the possibility of pursuing a career in coaching. For now, Whittingham said Wynn will help listed co-starters Hays and true freshman Travis Wilson each week.
Wynn was unavailable for comment, but teammates Dallin Rogers and Quade Chappuis addressed the situation at Utah's weekly press conference on Monday. Both acknowledged it's a difficult thing for Wynn.
"(Jordan) is one of my good friends," Chappuis said. " It's something that he wanted to do, so you've just got to support his decision."
Rogers added that his heart goes out to Wynn and that the team will continue to love and support him.
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