A guy leaves work for the day, gets home, and sees Twitter a buzz of the news that Joe Williams, Utah’s starting running back at the beginning of the season is retiring from the sport.
The thrust of Williams' thinking was that he didn't want to punish his body any further, pay consequences down the road. Graduates in Dec.— Kyle Goon (@kylegoon) September 14, 2016
Joe had a rough opening to the season with back-to-back games fumbling the football, while gaining just 75 yards on 22 carries. Last season, Williams had 477 yards and three touchdowns, while picking up the duties after Devontae Booker went down with a knee injury.
After Joe had his second fumble against BYU, many thought he wouldn’t see much of the field again, but he was back on the field in the 4th quarter on that final drive. It came out on Monday that Zack Moss and Troy McCormick were 1 and 2 on the depth chart, knocking Williams down to no better than third. Finally, the news broke just barely that he’s retiring from the game. Kyle Goon of the Salt Lake Tribune said that he didn’t want any long term effects down the road from playing. Evidently Joe also came out and said he has been contemplating retiring for a couple of months.
Of course, Utah has some talent at running back, with the aforementioned named Moss and McCormick, but also Armand Shyne can fill in for Joe. All three of those backs have shown a lot of potential this season.
As for Joe Williams, he had a ton of talent and speed, but something seemed off so far this year, and this must be why. Coach Whitt even said on his radio show on Thursday that Joe has some issues with his body, and he’s just lost the fire to take the pounding.
Anyway, best of luck to Joe, my heart breaks for the kid and I hope he gets things straightened out, and I have no doubt the program will welcome him back with open arms as an alum and a former Ute!
Good luck Joe, once a Ute, always a Ute!