College football player to forgo senior season to join seminary

Old Dominion University quarterback Blake LaRussa has found his calling – and it’s not the NFL.

The Virginia native who led the Monarchs to an upset win over Virginia Tech this season announced Wednesday he will forgo his senior season to join the seminary.

“It has been an incredible journey with Old Dominion football, but I would like to announce that I will be moving on from football after I graduate this spring and will be going into full-time ministry,” he said in a statement released by the school. “This fall (2019) I will be going to seminary school to start my Master’s of Divinity. I am so grateful for all my coaches and teammates who I have grown so close with these past four years.”

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LaRussa won the starting quarterback job at Old Dominion last season, only to lose it to a freshman this season. He won it back by Week 4 and led the team to an upset win over Virginia Tech behind four touchdowns and 495 passing yards. It was Old Dominion’s first win over a top-tier conference member in school history, and one of their four wins this season.

LaRussa finished the season with 3,015 passing yards and 19 touchdown passes in 11 games. He also was named honorable mention All-Conference USA, according to The Virginian-Pilot. And though, he loves football, LaRussa told ODUSports.com he felt like it was the right time to move on.

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“…This is something that I just feel God wants me to do. And it's something I want to do. Waiting another year to start just didn't make sense,” he said.

Coach Bobby Wilder praised LaRussa for his decision.

“Everyone associated with our program is very proud of Blake and the decision he has made for his future,” he said. “From the moment he walked on campus he represented our program's 'aim high' philosophy.”