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49ers tryout candidate Andrew King headed to Army assignment

A change in DOD policy will prevent King from further tryouts until after serving his two years active duty.

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The San Francisco 49ers invited 56 players to rookie minicamp last week, and one of the players was Army linebacker Andrew King. Tryout candidates are not under contract, and instead are trying to earn a deal. We saw it with the 49ers signing a few players earlier this week.

If a player does not land a deal with a team after rookie minicamp, he is allowed to try out with another team. Plenty of players get multiple rookie camp tryouts. King did not get a deal with the 49ers, so it is possible he would have been one of those players to try out with multiple teams.

Unfortunately for King, his NFL dream will have to wait two years. Last week, shortly after the close of the draft, the DOD announced that they were rescinding a policy that allowed graduates of military academies to defer their two years of active duty while playing professional sports.

King posted this message about the issue. He will attempt to return after his active duty is finished, but for the time being, he will become an infantry officer.

Athletes at military academies get their education paid for, and in return they have to serve time in active duty and then the reserves. The one downside to this recent policy change is that the DOD waited until after several football players had spent the past four months preparing for the draft. It is obviously the DOD’s prerogative to have or rescind the policy, but it seems like it would have been a little more fair to give the players a little more notice, or say, “this policy goes into effect next year.” But, such is life, and it’s good to see King maintaining his optimism. Best wishes to him, and stay safe!