At 26 years old, Montee Ball’s NFL career is over.
Four long years ago, Ball left Wisconsin as the NCAA’s all-time leader in career touchdowns. But Ball’s NFL career ended after just three seasons as the result of injuries, alcoholism and two domestic violence arrests (he still denied the claims made by both women).
In an interview with Sporting News, Ball opened up about his off-the-field problems and his future, which doesn’t include an NFL comeback. Ball told Sporting News that he’ll return to Wisconsin this summer and finish his undergraduate sociology degree, and then pursue a Master’s program.
The former B1G Offensive Player of the Year plans on participating in a mental wellness program offered by Richard Davidson, the renowned founder of the Center for Healthy Minds at Wisconsin.
According to the story, Ball is expecting to go to Cleveland and get an NFLPA-sponsored “Brain and Body” screening to evaluate the physical and psychological damage football did to his body. Ball also has goals to start a charity and even write a book about alcohol awareness and mental health.
“I’m really focused on improving my image and relationships that I destroyed,” Ball told Sporting News. “I let down the fans, the entire University of Wisconsin and my family. I want people to know I am deeply sorry.”
The story — you can and should read it in its entirety here — offered up some interesting insight as to what led Ball down his path.