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Pooka Williams opts out of remainder of season

KU’s star player has left the team to tend to family health issues back in Louisiana.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 12 Coastal Carolina at Kansas Photo by Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Pooka Williams is leaving KU to move back to Louisiana, per his own tweet and statements from KU and Les Miles.

Pooka’s statement reads:

Today I made the very difficult decision to opt out of the rest of the season to be closer to my mother and family in Louisiana. Family and health are the most important things to me. Right now I need to be with my mother, who is battling health issues.

I want to thank Coach Miles and everyone with the Kansas Football program for their commitment and understanding. I believe in the direction of Kansas football and what Coach Miles is building.

Rock Chalk Jayhawk

Obviously, all of us here at RCT wish only the best for Pooka and his mother, and hope for the best possible outcome for that family.

From a football standpoint, this is obviously terrible news for a Kansas program that has yet to get anything going offensively in any of the four game so far this year. The Jayhawks lose the most dynamic playmaker they’ve had since... Gale Sayers?... and would really appear to be in a bind if something were to happen to Velton Gardner.

Prior to this season, Pooka was on track to shatter career records at KU, but through four games was averaging just 49 rush yards at 3.8 yards per carry, well below his production throughout his first two seasons here in Lawrence. His usage was a little down this season compared to the first two years - 16.5 rush attempts per game vs 12.7 so far this year. I would think, however, that is mostly attributable to A) an injury suffered in week 1 against Coastal Carolina, and B) the lopsided scores Kansas has faced so far in 2020.

Pooka did offer some hope to KU faithful for a return with this (not so cryptic?) tweet:

Per a blanket waiver passed by the NCAA, Pooka can return to college football next season without losing a year of eligibility. But let’s be honest - he’s either gone to the NFL or will be Virginia Tech’s next impact transfer from Kansas.