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Kirby Smart announces 4-star TE Pearce Spurlin has retired from football due to heart issue

Screen Shot 2024-05-28 at 9.09.17 AMby:Kaiden Smith03/12/24

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Georgia head coach Kirby Smart announced Tuesday that sophomore tight end Pearce Spurlin has retired from football due to a heart issue according to a report from Dawgs HQ.

“He’s going to have to take a medical disqualification,” Smart said. “He will no longer be able to play football”

Spurlin played high school football in South Walton High School in Santa Rosa Beach (FL) where he was a four-star prospect ranked the No. 68 overall recruit and the No. 2 tight end in the nation for the 2023 cycle, according to the On3 Industry Ranking, a weighted average that utilizes all four major recruiting media companies.

Following Smart’s announcement, Spurlin took to social media, posting a heartfelt message regarding his retirement that can be seen below.

Pearce revealed that his pre-existing heart condition has now put him at a high risk when playing contact sports, in turn putting an end to his football career. As he thanked God, his teammates, his coaches, the doctors, and trainers for their recent support and impact on him throughout his career. Also adding that he will still be involved with the program and embracing a new role to support his coaches and teammates.

Georgia also released a comprehensive statement regarding Pearce’s condition, his decision to step away from football, and what his future in Athens will entail.

“Spurlin has a congenital heart condition that representatives from Georgia were aware of and that they have closely monitored,” read the statement statement. “Over time and after discussion and counseling with medical specialists, Spurlin and his family have made the decision that he will no longer play. He will remain on scholarship, continue with his studies at Georgia and work with the football team in another role”

“We care deeply for Pearce and he will remain on scholarship and part of our program,” Smart added. “Our tight ends coach Todd Hartley and the other tight ends hate for a person and a player like Pearce to not be part of their room, and they will continue to provide him with the support he needs as he goes through this transition.”

In his freshman season for the Bulldogs Spurlin appeared in six games, catching three passes for 60 yards. Catching a career-long 31-yard pass in Capital One Orange Bowl victory over Florida State that will unfortunately serve as the final catch of his career. As he’ll now look to transition and help the Bulldogs in other ways moving forward.