College Sports

UCF QB McKenzie Milton details gruesome injury in first interviews since it happened.

Central Florida quarterback McKenzie Milton (10) rolls out to throw a pass during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Navy Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018, in Orlando, Fla.
Central Florida quarterback McKenzie Milton (10) rolls out to throw a pass during the second half of an NCAA college football game against Navy Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018, in Orlando, Fla. AP

UCF quarterback McKenzie Milton gave his first interviews since his devastating leg injury on Nov. 23 against USF in Tampa that ended his season and cast doubt about his football future.

It turns out, the injury could have changed his way of life completely.

Milton told Central Florida-based radio station, Real Radio 104.1, the details of his gruesome injury.

“It was tough, but at the same time, 50 percent of people that suffer my injury — I had a knee dislocation and a popliteal artery — have to have their leg amputated,” Milton told The Monsters in the Morning show on Real Radio 104.1.

Milton also spoke to Marc Daniels on Orlando-based FM-96.9 as he conducted both radio interviews to promote the Better Man Event held at UCF’s CFE Arena.

It’s a faith-based event on April 13 where Milton is scheduled to share his story. Milton said his faith has helped him in his recovery.

“I’m already beating the odds by the grace of God. When you have a knee dislocation, you tear everything,” Milton said. “It was miracle after miracle.”

The injury came in the first half against USF, and it resulted in Milton getting carted off the field and taken to Tampa General Hospital.

Darriel Mack Jr. took over at quarterback and guided the Knights past the Bulls and against Memphis in the following week’s American Athletic Conference championship game. Mack Jr. also started the Fiesta Bowl loss to LSU.

On Monday, Milton was visible at UCF’s first spring practice as head coach Josh Heupel told reporters that Milton had a long ways to go in his recovery and that four quarterbacks on the roster are getting an even split of reps this spring. Those quarterbacks include Mack Jr., Notre Dame transfer Brandon Wimbush, freshman Dillon Gabriel and redshirt freshman Quadry Jones.

“For me right now, I’m just checking off like little accomplishments at a time,” Milton said on The Beat of Sports show on FM-96.9.

Milton said he will start weight bearing on his legs starting Friday.

“That’s a little check. When I first got hurt, I had to take blood thinners and take shots in my stomach every day,” Milton said. “So when I had to stop doing those, that was a little check. In two months, I’ll be able to walk in my brace, so that’s a little check. For me, I’ve always looked at small victories like those will add up inch by inch and then it’ll be something big when it comes into fruition.”

Sports reporter Jason has covered high school, college and pro sports since joining the Bradenton Herald in 2010. He’s won Florida Press Club awards for sports feature and column writing. He currently writes college and pro sports stories for the McClatchy East Region real-time team.


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