Joey Tanona retirement news just flat-out sucks

Unreached potential in life has always been one of the saddest things I’ve thought you can think about. It only gets that much sadder when the potential doesn’t get reached due to the fault of literally no-one and instead it’s simply stolen from somebody.

That’s the case with Notre Dame freshman offensive lineman Joey Tanona.

Or as he unfortunately now is, former Notre Dame freshman offensive lineman Joey Tanona.

Tanona’s college football career is over before it really ever got going. The interior offensive lineman was ranked as a top 75 recruit nationally by On3 in the most recently completed recruiting cycle, and all because of a random car accident that could have happened to literally anyone, his college football career is over as he’s decided to retire due to medical concerns.

But that recruiting ranking listed above doesn’t matter. It would be awful news if he was the nation’s top ranked recruit and had 75-plus scholarship offers just as it would be terrible if he was a preferred walk-on.

Or if he didn’t receive any scholarship offers to play football and was playing at the Division III level.

Tanona chose to go to Notre Dame at least in part because of the opportunity “to run out of that tunnel” as “Rudy” said in 1993 and now he’ll never get that chance as an active player.

He won’t get four or five years of a college football career that he was gifted enough to earn, but unfortunate enough to have taken away for no reason other than bad luck.

He and his parents will never experience a senior day moment looking back at his four years wearing a gold helmet.

NFL dreams? You can unfortunately cross those off, too.

Go ahead discuss what it means for Notre Dame’s future on the offensive line and I understand how and why many people’s minds go there, but to me I just can’t get over how unfair of news this to hear about a young man who is still a couple years from being able to legally purchase an alcoholic beverage.

All the best in whatever life brings going forward, Joey. It’s not fair as a whole and I’m sure you’re aware right now but I have a funny feeling that you’re going to succeed in whatever avenue you pursue.

And I’m guessing I won’t be the only complete stranger rooting like all hell for you.

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