Illini DL Bryce Douglas granted release

Published 02/04 2014 06:35PM

Updated 02/04 2014 06:49PM

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Illinois defensive lineman Bryce Douglas was given his release from the U of I Tuesday, and he tells WCIA 3 he is hoping to transfer to another school where he can continue his football career.  This comes after a neck injury ended his Illinois playing career early.

Douglas is the son of former Illinois basketball great Bruce Douglas.  He had just finished his redshirt freshman year, but he wasn't cleared to play by Illinois' doctors after he suffered a neck injury early in the season.  Douglas met with head coach Tim Beckman Tuesday to discuss his options.  Beckman granted Douglas his release - so he can transfer if he chooses - but also offered him a chance to stay at school and keep his scholarship.

"[Beckman] wants to do whatever is going to make me happy, and whatever he can do to help me," Douglas said.  "He has been great.  He is still going to let me use the facilities if no one is using them to work out.  He said if you want to stay you'll be a coach here.  You're still going to be on scholarship, but if you want to play somewhere else I'll happily tell coaches about your great character and how great of a kid you are."

Douglas redshirted this season, so he still has four years of eligibility remaining.  He is considering transferring to an FCS school where he would be eligible to play immediately, but left the option open to remain at Illinois.

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