You always have to feel for college football players forced into early retirement from the sport, but it is an unfortunate reality for a number of players every year. Add Washington senior offensive guard Dexter Charles to that list. Washington announced Monday the retirement of Charles as a result of a lingering knee injury.
“We’re all very disappointed that Dexter’s injury won’t allow him to continue to play,” Washington head coach Chris Petersen said in a released statement. “I’m grateful for his dedication and hard work and very pleased that he earned his degree. He’s interested in the coaching profession, and I wish him nothing but the best.”
Losing Charles is a significant blow to Washington’s already inexperienced offensive line. The Huskies were scheduled to return just two starters from last season, with Charles at left guard and Coleman Shelton at right tackle. Shelton was not a full-time starter either, but he will now likely take on a full-time starting gig on the line. As reported by The Seattle Times, Charles had previously started 30 games for the Huskies.
Junior Jake Eldenkamp is expected to move into the left guard position now vacated by Charles as the Washington offensive line looks to regroup and build a new identity this fall.