Willie Lowe requests release from Iowa
University of Iowa defensive back Willie Lowe, one of the 13 players hospitalized in January with a muscle disorder following workouts, has asked for a release to allow his transfer from the school.
He, however, also said Tuesday that he's not sure if he'll be able to play again.
"I don't know," Lowe said. "I would like to be able to sit out a year, regain my strength, feel fine and play again. But I don't know. I am still down 20 pounds and I am having headaches every few days."
Iowa has announced that all 13 players have been cleared to participate this spring. But the senior back said, "Only a few players are back to full speed that I know of. Some said this wasn't a big deal. But this was a big deal to me."
Lowe said he worked out for the first time since the hospitalization on Monday.
"I can confirm that William Lowe has requested permission to talk with other schools," Gary Barta, Iowa's athletic director, said in a statement. "While we've honored that request, our interest is for him to remain a Hawkeye."
Two family sources of hospitalized players said Lowe is not the only cleared player to still be experiencing symptoms from workouts that occurred more than two months ago.
One source close to Lowe said the player will undergo an independent medical evaluation to determine the possible long-term effects of the rhabdomyolsis, a stress-induced syndrome that can damage cells and also affected Lowe's kidneys.
An Iowa investigation concluded that a strenuous squat-lifting workout was the primary cause of the 13 players being hospitalized.
Joe Schad is a college football reporter for ESPN.
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