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A UCLA offensive lineman is stepping away from football in his somber announcement via social media on Saturday. UCLA Bruin Thomas Cole took to his Twitter to share that after considerable mental health challenges and an attempt at suicide made this year, he is leaving the school’s football program.
“I haven’t been present at the Wasserman facility for the past six months. This is because at the start of 2022 I made an attempt to take my own life,” the offensive lineman shared on social media.
“At first I was regretful that I survived my attempt, but thankfully due to the people at the UCLA hospital, Paradigm residential treatment, and my therapist Meg, I have come to a much brighter outlook for my own future.”
The redshirt freshman did not play for the Bruins in 2021. Fellow UCLA Bruin Martell Irby announced his leave from the football program earlier this year, as reported by The Los Angeles Times, also citing issues with mental health.
“After many months of thorough consideration I have come to the conclusion that football is not conducive for my mental health, and there is more to my life than the game of football,” Cole said.
“I will forever cheer on the Bruins and wish the football program nothing but success,” he added. “Everyone I interacted with at UCLA, from coaches to teachers, tutors and more thank you so much! You all have had a great impact in my life. For all of those who may be struggling, you are not alone and you are loved. It is ok to ask for help. Thank you to my family for being so loving during this process of learning to live again.”
If you or someone you know is having thoughts of suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255)