Tahlequah Daily Press

NSU Sports

June 27, 2014

Family illness led to Deaton’s departure


Northeastern State’s now-former quarterback had to leave the program due an illness in the family, the Daily Press learned late Wednesday night.

It was reported by the Daily Press that Johnny Deaton, who transferred to NSU from Oklahoma State in 2011, was no longer a part of the RiverHawk football team. That news was confirmed by first-year head coach Rob Robinson.

However, the reason for Deaton’s absence on the roster was unknown. That was until late Wednesday night.

“Johnny left the team because his father is terminally ill,” Jana Deaton, Johnny’s mother, said in a Facebook message to the Daily Press. “He was in good standing with the team, and he left to spend time with his father and take care of him.”

Johnny Deaton was in line to compete with Kevin Pantastico and Thor Long for quarterbacking duties in the 2014 season. Robinson refrained from naming a starting quarterback at the end of spring practice.

Deaton suffered a leg injury during the RiverHawks’ season-opening game at Pittsburg State in 2013, and caused him to miss the rest of the season. He returned for spring practice after being granted a medical redshirt, and he was slated to be a senior during the 2014 campaign.

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