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NECK INJURY FORCES FORMER GAMECOCK STANDOUT TO GIVE UP FOOTBALL

Former University of South Carolina standout DeVonte Holloman has been advised to end his professional football career in the wake of a neck injury sustained during a preseason game.

Reporter Charean Williams of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram  broke the sad news from Dallas Cowboys’ head coach Jason Garrett via Twitter.

Holloman, 23, played in nine games for the Cowboys in 2013 – recording 26 tackles and two sacks.  He was listed as the teams No. 2 strong side linebacker heading into the 2014 season.  The 6-foot-2, 242-pound linebacker missed seven games last season with a “spinal contusion,” although it’s not clear whether his latest injury – suffered during the Cowboys’ second preseason game against the Baltimore Ravens – was related.

“He was going for a tackle and one of his teammates made contact with him underneath his arm,” reporter Brandon George of The Dallas Morning News noted. “Holloman slammed his right fist in the turf after the injury.”

Selected by the Cowboys in the sixth round of the 2013 draft, Holloman – a Charlotte, N.C. native – made numerous big plays during his career as a Gamecock.  Against Clemson, Holloman recorded three interceptions in four victories over the Tigers.  He also had a big interception in the Gamecocks’ beatdown of No. 5 Georgia in 2012 – and forced a fumble in USC’s 2013 Outback Bowl win over Michigan.

Here’s a video of his Gamecock highlights (again, please excuse the annoying audio commentary from USC radio announcer Todd Ellis).

(Click to play)

Yeah … dude was a baller.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to Holloman and his family. We wish him nothing but the best …

Pic: Travis Bell Photography