— ACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi offensive lineman Austin Golson says he's considering leaving the school because of family-related health issues.
The 6-foot-5, 309-pound sophomore from Prattville, Ala., is expected to be the Rebels' starting right tackle next season after playing in all 12 regular season games in 2013.
Golson said on Monday that both of his grandfathers are having health issues. He said he is "exploring his options" and hasn't made a final decision though he wants to make one by the end of the spring semester.
"Family comes first and that's the way it should be," Golson said in an interview with The Associated Press. "I'm still not certain about what I'm going to do. I love my teammates and everything about the team."
Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze confirmed on Monday that Golson was considering leaving the school. Freeze said he would probably not put any limitations on the transfer if he decides to leave.
Golson's hometown is a suburb of Montgomery, Ala., and only about an hour from Auburn. Freeze and Auburn coach Gus Malzahn are close friends.
Golson was part of the Rebels' highly-rated 2013 recruiting class that included immediate impact players like defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche, offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil and safety Tony Connor.
Golson played mostly at the guard positions last season, but was expected to slide over to right tackle to replace departed senior Pierce Burton.
If Golson leaves, it would leave the Rebels thin at tackle. Ole Miss signed five offensive linemen in its most recent recruiting class, but it's unclear if any will be able to step in and start immediately.