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LAWRENCE, Kan. — Pooka Williams has opted out of the remainder of the 2020 college football season, a decision that will in all likelihood end the standout junior running back’s electrifying Kansas career.

Williams, a preseason All-Big 12 selection, announced his decision to step away from the program Monday night via a graphic posted to Twitter. A likely NFL draft selection when his collegiate career ends, Williams is eligible to take that path beginning next spring.

Williams wrote that family concerns were behind his decision to leave the team.

″(Monday) I made the very difficult decision to opt out of the rest of the season to be closer to my mother and family in Louisiana,” Williams wrote. “Family and health are the most important things to me. Right now I need to be with my mother, who is battling health issues.

“I want to thank Coach (Les) Miles and everyone with the Kansas football program for their commitment and understanding. I believe in the direction of Kansas football and what Coach Miles is building.”

The 5-foot-10, 170-pounder out of New Orleans added a caption to the graphic: “Family over everything. I’m going to miss all my guys & coaches(.) (I)t’s forever Rock Chalk,” he wrote.

“I’m proud of him for making this tremendous sacrifice to support his family, and do what he believes is right,” Miles said in a statement. 

“We will be there for Pooka and his family in every way possible moving forward.” 

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