Ohio State Linebacker K’Vaughan Pope Tosses Jersey, Gloves to Crowd and Apparently Quits Team Mid-Game

by Matthew Memrick
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Ohio State senior linebacker K’Vaughan Pope reportedly called it quits in the middle of a game Saturday, tossing his jersey and gloves to the crowd.

There’s no official confirmation during the Ohio State-Akron game, but more information is probably forthcoming.

By the way, did we mention the Buckeyes were leading 45-7 in the third quarter?

Pope reportedly went back to the locker room in the second quarter after what appeared to be a heated exchange with linebacker coach Al Washington and others on the sideline.

Buckeye Scoop reporter Alex Gleitman got word of Pope’s decision during the game. Gleitman Tweeted that Pope tried to go to the locker room and was upset. 

Gleitman said Pope “headed back to sidelines and then was escorted to locker room with (Director of Player Development C.J. Barnett) without his helmet.”

Lettermen Row reporter Austin Ward had an additional detail.

“Pope tried to run out on the field in a sub package,” Ward Tweeted. “Teradja Mitchell waved him off, and Pope stormed down the sideline.”

Teams use various sub-packages when the opposing offense brings an uneven number of players on the field, such as extra linemen and tight ends for short-yardage situations or additional receivers for passing downs. 

Maybe Pope had had enough of Ohio State. Who knows.

Later in the night, Pope Tweeted and then deleted a post about his school. One fan caught it, however.

NFL Player Quits During Game

In 2018, former cornerback Vontae Davis quit mid-game as his team was losing 28-6 to the Los Angeles Chargers. The 30-year-old Buffalo Bills player left two games into the season.

Davis had signed a one-year, $5 million deal with $3.5 million guaranteed. The team probably thought Davis was a low-risk veteran option and were willing to take the chance on the player. 

After the game, second-year coach Sean McDermott was still confused about the player’s decision, not knowing if he had quit the game or the team altogether.

Maybe Ohio State coach Ryan Day knows why his player quit or will find out soon.

But Davis issued a statement saying he retired and the media outraged. The player later said he lost his passion for the sport and that leaving was the best thing for him. The Bills finished the season at 6-10.

Sometimes Players Quit In Games

Former baseball player John Kruk quit after hitting a single in the first inning of a game. He left the field right then and there. It was not as shocking, seeing that the former All-Star was at the end of an injury-plagued career.

Pope, an Ohio State senior, could have quit from the toll of the physical college football game.

Others have made excuses for their play and just wanted out. One Massachusetts high school hockey goalie made a grand exit.

One a senior night in 2013, Austin Krause made headlines with three minutes left and a one-goal lead by his team.

Reportedly, Krause casually played the puck from behind his goal and scored in his team’s net. Then, the player flew the bird at his team, saluted the crowd, and left the ice. 

Nobody wants to be known as a quitter, right?

Outsider.com