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Back injury forces BYU center Ian Harward to retire

May 9, 2013, 9:59 PM EST

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One of the basic goals for any athlete is to be able to end their career on their own terms.

Unfortunately that isn’t the case for BYU center Ian Harward, as the school announced on Thursday that complications from a back injury suffered last summer have forced him to retire.

The 6-11 Harward played in 22 games this past season, averaging just four minutes per game for Dave Rose’s Cougars. The Orem, Utah native served a two-year LDS mission in San Antonio from 2009 to 2011 and sat out the 2011-12 season as a redshirt.

Harward’s career highs were seven points in a loss to Notre Dame (November 17) and five rebounds in a win over Virginia Tech on December 29.

“We are sorry to lose Ian to injury,” Rose said in a statement released by the school. “He is a fantastic teammate and one of the hardest workers we have had in our program.

“He will be missed in the locker room and on the floor. We wish him and his wife Sarah the very best.”

Harward will continue to work towards his bachelors degree at BYU.

Raphielle can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.