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Injuries force UCLA safety Dietrich Riley to end football career

Once one of the top defensive prospects in Southern California, Dietrich Riley will no longer play for UCLA. [Keith Birmingham/ZUMAPress.com] Dietrich Riley, a former top prospect, will no longer play for UCLA. (Keith Birmingham/ZUMAPress.com)
By Zac Ellis

UCLA safety Dietrich Riley has seen his football career come to an end. Riley will retire from college football thanks to nagging neck and shoulder injuries, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Riley missed the entire 2012 season after undergoing surgery to fuse together two vertebrae, an injury suffered when he collided with Cal tailback Isi Sofele in a game in 2011.

Riley missed much of spring practice and was unable to get final medical clearance for his junior season in 2013.

The loss of Riley highlights an already gaping hole in the Bruins' secondary. UCLA lost all four starters from last season's defensive backfield, with sophomore safety Randall Goforth returning as the only player to start a game in the secondary in 2012. Coach Jim Mora Jr. might look to junior cornerback Anthony Jefferson and senior safety Brandon Sermons for leadership in the unit, as both players head into the season with game experience.

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