A series of medical issues has forced Nebraska quarterback Kody Spano to end his football career, the program confirmed Tuesday. The junior will finish his undergraduate degree at NU.
On Twitter Tuesday night, Spano tweeted: “I will also continue to be with the team this year and the next. You’ll see me on the sidelines signaling in plays! And helping younger players learn the new offense.”
As a redshirt freshman, Spano was battling for the starting quarterback job in spring 2009 when he tore the anterior-cruciate ligament in his knee. He made a speedy enough recovery to return for fall camp, when he tore his ACL again and missed the whole season.
“Football,” Nebraska head coach Pelini said at the time. “That’s what happens. Just running. It was a non-contact injury. Happens.”
Although Spano returned for spring drills in 2010, he was not on the 105-man roster to start fall camp. With his knees healthy fully again in the 2011 spring camp, he was making strides when he hurt his non-throwing shoulder just before the spring game.
A native of Stephenville, Texas, Spano threw for more than 5,000 yards and accounted for 75 total touchdowns during his final two years of high school football. He committed to Oklahoma State and originally intended to enroll there in January 2008 until OSU coach Mike Gundy informed him there was no scholarship available. He enrolled at NU instead.
With the end to Spano’s career, NU now has three quarterbacks – junior Cody Green, sophomore Taylor Martinez, and redshirt freshman Brion Carnes – on scholarship. True freshman Jamal Turner has moved – at least for now – to wide receiver/kick returner. Recruit Bubba Starling has a looming decision between NU and professional baseball. Ron Kellogg III is a sophomore walk-on, and Aurora standout Tyson Broekemeier is set to join the team as a walk-on this summer.