Penn State defensive lineman Ryan Buchholz, a versatile returning starter, announced on Twitter late Wednesday morning that he was retiring from the sport due to his injury history.
Buchholz, who missed three games last year due to injury, said he’s spent years dealing with “extreme pain” developed in high school. And that didn’t go away in Happy Valley.
“After multiple back surgeries and the inability to perform 100% at this level, it is time for me to retire,” he wrote. “You only have one body and my health and future well-being is most important to me.
“Unfortunately, some things don’t last forever and I am just very thankful for everyone who has helped and supported me throughout my career.”
The redshirt junior played in 23 career games with six starts last season. He was expected to be an every-down starter this year, especially with defensive end Kevin Givens moving back inside and defensive end Torrence Brown still not fully recovered from last year’s season-ending injury.
Defensive ends Shaka Toney, Yetur Gross-Matos and Shane Simmons will now likely be asked to fill his role.
Buchholz finishes his career with 34 tackles, seven tackles-for-loss, five sacks, four QB pressures, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. He was the team’s Defensive Player of the Week after last year’s season-opening win against Akron, and he twice earned academic All-Big Ten honors.
Penn State head coach James Franklin is scheduled to address the media about 6 p.m. Wednesday. Check our football page for updates.