49ers RB Lattimore retires from football

Santa Clara, CA (SportsNetwork.com) – San Francisco 49ers running back Marcus
Lattimore says he is retiring from football without ever playing a down in the
NFL because of the same knee injury that cut short his college career two
years ago.

Lattimore, 23, was drafted in the fourth round by the 49ers last year despite
a gruesome injury to his right knee in October 2012, when the University of
South Carolina star tore multiple ligaments and suffered a dislocated knee
cap against Tennessee.

His sophomore season was also cut short in 2011 over a torn ligament in his
left knee.

Lattimore said in a statement Wednesday that he’s “given my heart and soul to
the game that I love, and it’s time for me to move on to the next chapter of
my life and help others” though his foundation, which benefits youth sports
programs in South Carolina.

“I have given every ounce of my energy toward making a full recovery from my
knee injury, and I have made a lot of progress,” Lattimore said.
“Unfortunately, getting my knee fully back to the level the NFL demands has
proven insurmountable.

“I am grateful for the entire 49ers organization. Their decision to draft me
was the realization of a lifelong dream to be an NFL player, and I cannot
thank them enough for believing in me and for doing everything in their power
to assist my recovery.”

Lattimore holds South Carolina records for rushing touchdowns (38) and total
touchdowns (41). He rushed for 2,677 yards in 29 appearances for the
Gamecocks and entered the NFL Draft as a junior. He says he will return to
South Carolina to finish his degree.