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Montana offensive lineman Colton Keintz retires from football to focus on mental health

Colton Keintz
Posted at 6:22 PM, Oct 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-05 09:33:03-04

MISSOULA — Montana offensive lineman Colton Keintz announced over social media on Monday afternoon that he has decided to hang up his cleats in his college football career.

The Missoula Big Sky graduate posted a lengthy message on Twitter, saying "There are accomplishments in my life that I am proud of, but few of them have compared to the experience of being a Griz. Throughout the last four years, I have learned lessons about life that have made me the man that I am today. Unfortunately, all things must come to an end, and in order to get the opportunity to take care of myself and my mental health, I have decided to hang up my cleats."

Keintz played in three games for Montana this fall at right guard and started against Cal Poly. He did not play in Montana's most recent game, a loss to Eastern Washington.

Keintz made the switch to right guard after seeing time at right tackle including five starts in 2019. The 6-foot-8 Keintz was majoring in media arts at UM and spoke to MTN in 2019 about his passion for film and stage work.

A spokesman for UM confirmed that Keintz is no longer on the team's roster. Keintz was a redshirt junior with Montana after joining the program in 2017.

"Mental health is an ever-growing issue in the world of sports, and student-athletes far and wide are suffering in silence," Keintz wrote. "These people are humans just like the rest of us, and there is so much more to them as people than the sport they play.

"I am blessed to have learned under the coaching staff that I had. Coach (Bobby) Hauck, Coach (Chad) Germer, Coach (Timm) Rosenbach, and the entire Griz Football staff have been nothing but completely supportive throughout this process, and I will always be grateful for the relationships I've built with them. To my teammates, the memories that we have made and the relationships that we've built over the years will forever hold a place in my heart. You've got a lifelong fan and a brother in me, and I am blessed to have been on this journey with you. Go be great! I love you all! -76."