History of head injuries ends Jones' Lady Vols career early
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) Tennessee forward Jasmine Jones won't play basketball for the Lady Volunteers anymore after missing most of the last two seasons with head injuries.
The school issued a statement Monday saying the university's medical staff wouldn't clear Jones to play ''due to the contact nature of basketball and the risks of further injury.'' The school release said Jones is ''focusing her athletics ability on non-contact and throwing events on the women's track and field team.''
Jones, a 6-foot-2 forward from Madison, Alabama, will remain with the women's basketball team through the remainder of this season but won't be able to play in any games. Jones graduated in December with a sociology degree.
''I came to Tennessee to win basketball games and to graduate,'' Jones said in a statement released by the school. ''I have sacrificed my body for the sake of winning for this program, and I have lived my dream, which was to be a Lady Volunteer basketball player. I have given my all to Tennessee over the last four years, and my athletic career will end on my terms.''
Jones made six starts and played seven games last season - averaging 9.4 points and 4.6 rebounds - before taking a medical redshirt due to lingering concussion-like symptoms. Jones returned this season and started three of the first five games she played before suffering another head injury when she collided with a teammate in a Nov. 29 loss to Texas.
She hasn't played since that collision. Jones averaged 6 points and 5.4 rebounds in the five games she played before getting hurt.
''I cannot say enough about how tough of a competitor Jasmine Jones has been for our program,'' Tennessee coach Holly Warlick said in a statement.