By Harry Allison
Running back Journey Brown’s career at Penn State has ended.
He announced last night that he has been diagnosed with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.
According to the Mayo Clinic, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy is “a disease in which the heart muscle becomes abnormally thick” and “can make it harder for the heart to pump blood.”
The heart condition has forced Brown to medically retire from the game of football.
“The pain of not being able to play the game I love anymore hurts and I can’t explain how I am feeling right now. However, I can walk away from the game knowing I truly gave my all at every practice, on every down and in the locker room every day,” Brown wrote.
— SUNNY-D☀️? (@JourneyBrown6) November 11, 2020
Last month, Penn State announced that Brown could miss the 2020 season after a “medical condition” was discovered during the offseason. No specifics were given at the time.
Penn State head coach James Franklin said yesterday that Brown’s condition was uncovered as a result of the testing the players underwent as part of COVID-19 protocols. Brown consulted multiple opinions, and it was determined that he should stop playing football.
“Journey is one of the most popular and respected players on our team,” Franklin said. “When we found out about this in early September, the entire organization rallied behind Journey and his family. We need Nittany Nation to do the same, as I know we will. Journey’s handled this unbelievably well and I know he’ll be extremely successful, whatever he decides to do.”
Brown established himself as one of the Big Ten’s top running backs as the 2019 season progressed. In 10 starts, Brown rushed for 890 yards and 12 touchdowns on 129 carries. Brown also caught 15 passes for 134 yards and a score in 2019.
His biggest game came in what would end up being his final game. In PSU’s win over Memphis in the Cotton Bowl, Brown rushed for 202 yards and two touchdowns on just 16 carries.