Texas officially announced Monday what most fans have been expecting for quite a while now — David Ash is out for the remainder of the season.
Kenny Boyd, head athletic trainer for football, released a statement Monday morning, which announced that Ash and his family, along with the medical staff, believe that the best decision for his recovery is for him to sit out for the rest of the season.
“Though he’s made a lot of progress, we have not been able to clear him to return to competition,” Boyd said. “Due to the duration of symptoms, we are now at a point that we all believe the best approach for him is to not return this season.”
After suffering a concussion earlier in the season against Brigham Young University, Ash experienced another head injury in his game against Kansas State, which has put him out of commission since late September.
Without their starting quarterback, the Longhorns have gone 5-2 with senior Case McCoy under center. In the three games he appeared in, Ash recorded eight touchdowns, including one rushing, with 760 passing yards.
“He’s been at practice every day,” head coach Mack Brown said. “He’s in shorts. He’s not dressed out but he’s not practicing. But he’s out there every day. He seems to be doing fine, upbeat and I know he’s a competitor so he wants to come back.”
Ash’s teammates have missed the Belton native and are wishing for his full recovery. With all the talk about concussions in the game of football nowadays, no one is a stranger to the seriousness of his injuries.
“That was a scary deal,” McCoy said. “You can tell now, as long as it’s taken to analyze the situation. I think our trainers have handled it exceptionally well. It’s a scary thing for anyone in that situation. But they’ve handled it the right way. It looks like he’ll be able to come back and play. So, yeah, we’re thankful for David.”
In Texas’ game against Oklahoma State, Ash was on the sideline to provide support for his team. It is unclear whether or not he’ll be on the sideline for the remainder of the games this season, but many of his teammates hope he stays around. While he may not be able to help on the field, his teammates believe his presence is still felt.
“When things get hectic David always has a way of settling everybody down,” senior offensive lineman Mason Walters said. “So I think he’ll help out with that. But it’s about getting better, I think that helps us all out a little bit.”
There is still no timetable for when Ash will be able to return. Coaches have said he has continued to get better every week, but every eight days or so concussion symptoms arise. Brown still stays hopeful that Ash will be back on the field in the spring and will appeal to get his year back.
“I just wasn’t sure [on Ash’s condition] because we had to wait,” Brown said. “We cant even talk to David really without medical people being there, without him feeling pressured we want him back. The doctors and trainings talked to his family and [Monday] is really the first day that we all decided for him not to play and get a fresh start in the spring.”