NORMAN — Twelve months ago, several Oklahoma underclassmen were considering skipping their senior seasons and entering the 2013 NFL Draft.
Wide receiver Kenny Stills ultimately made the jump, and a few days before the Sooners' Cotton Bowl loss to Texas A&M, he spoke with reporters about another junior who was weighing his options — fullback Trey Millard.
“It's different because fullbacks don't get taken as much,” Stills said then. “They have to consider the punishment their bodies are taking. Their careers are cut a little bit short than the rest of ours.”
Injuries were certainly a factor Millard considered before ultimately deciding to return for his senior year. Because he accepted that risk, Millard remains at peace with his decision, even though a late-October ACL tear prematurely ended his college career.
“No regrets at all,” Millard told The Oklahoman in a telephone interview this week. “I knew when I came back that this was a possibility. I think before the injury, I grew even more as a football player and as a leader of the team. I loved that I came back and played with my guys.”
Millard said his recovery is on schedule and that he even started lifting weights again this week. Those small victories, though, don't make the fact that he'll miss Oklahoma's Sugar Bowl matchup with Alabama any easier.
He tore an ACL while playing on kickoff coverage early in the fourth quarter of the Sooners' 38-30 win over Texas Tech on Oct. 26.
Only 12 days later, Millard watched from the sideline as Baylor routed Oklahoma 41-12.
“It was extremely frustrating,” Millard said. “Just to be on the sideline for a game like that, when you lose like that, you definitely want to be out there helping your team.”