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Quarterback McKenzie Milton starting vs. Jacksonville State

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Milton’s return hits another major milestone

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: SEP 05 Notre Dame at Florida State Photo by David Rosenblum/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Quarterback McKenzie Milton’s long road back to college football has reached another apex — for the first time since 2018, he’ll be under center starting a game.

Milton made his return to the football field last week against Notre Dame, nearly leading the Florida State Seminole to an upset over the No. 9 Notre Dame Fighting Irish. His return was heralded across sport, with his return being deemed a near-miracle.

From an ESPN piece:

“It was emotional, surreal. I keep thinking, ‘Did this actually happen?’” said Levy, one of the orthopedic surgeons who helped Milton return to the field after the quarterback suffered artery and nerve damage to his right leg, a dislocated knee and torn ligaments in a game on Nov. 23, 2018.

Levy came to Tallahassee with his entire family. He had to be here. After all, he promised Milton he would be there in person when he played again. Levy warned him from the very beginning it might not be possible to play football because the injury was so severe.

“We had that conversation the first day I met him,” Levy recalled. “I said, ‘Even if you miraculously get back and do what no one has ever done before, you’ll have to ask yourself, do you want to?’ What was amazing is there was never a hint of a hesitation. He said, ‘Doc, I know I’m playing football again. I just know it.’”

Here’s his bio, via FSU Sports Info:

Graduate transfer from UCF…led Knights to 27-6 record as a starter, including undefeated 2017 season, and two American Athletic Conference championships…only two-time AAC Offensive Player of the Year…finished sixth in Heisman Trophy vote in 2018 and eighth in 2017…2018 finalist for Sullivan Award given to nation’s top amateur athlete…was 630-of-1,020 passing for 8,683 yards and 72 touchdowns with only 22 interceptions and added 1,078 yards and 20 touchdowns on 285 rushes for 9,761 yards of total offense…streak of 24 straight games with at least one passing touchdown ranks second in program history…total offense yards, completions, pass efficiency rating of 152.3, 13.8 average yards per completion and interception percentage of 2.2 ranked third in program history…ranked fourth in pass attempts, passing touchdowns and touchdown responsibility…had 12 300-yard passing games, third on UCF’s all-time list, and two 400-yard passing games, fourth in program history…broke UCF single-season records with 4,650 yards of total offense, 4,037 passing yards, 37 passing touchdowns, average of 10.2 yards per attempt and pass efficiency rating of 179.29 in 2017…also set new single-season program quarterback rushing mark with 613 yards and tied program records with seven 300-yard passing games and two 400-yard passing games in 2017…had back-to-back six-touchdown games in 2018, passing for three and rushing for three in win vs. FAU and passing for four with two rushing scores eight days later in win vs. Pitt…broke UCF freshman record with 194 completions in 2016…missed final two games of 2018 and all of 2019 and 2020 seasons due to injury…compiled 9,113 yards of total offense in 34 career games at Mililani, courtesy of 7,303 passing yards with 81 touchdowns and 1,810 rushing yards with 18 touchdowns…2014 Hawai’i Gatorade Player of the Year and USA Today Hawai’i Offensive Player of the Year…led Trojans to Division I state title with perfect record his junior season after taking team to state championship game as a sophomore.