Virginia Cavaliers head football coach Bronco Mendenhall announced at his weekly press conference that linebacker Malcolm Cook will retire from football due to injuries.
#UVa’s Bronco Mendenhall says that Malcom Cook has not recovered fully from his injury and has decided to retire from football. He’ll have surgery soon to “get his body healthy again.”— Brad Franklin (@Cavs_Corner) November 7, 2018
Cook had started twice for UVA in 2018, but missed five games due to injury. He’ll finish his career with 70 total tackles, 4 tackles for loss, and 2 sacks.
Hopefully this will not be the end of Cook’s involvement with Virginia football. As Mike Barber detailed in a 2017 piece in the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Cook has had an inspirational rise from the troubled Mosby Court area he grew up in. Cook’s role as a quasi-coach in 2016 while he was sidelined with myocarditis grew his bond with Coach Mendenhall and helped him understand the ins and outs of Virginia’s complex, aggressive, unique defensive scheme.
That’s the combination of character and football smarts that Mendenhall has made a priority among his coaches. Let’s hope there’s room for one more.