Penn State kicker Joey Julius opens up about eating disorder

Dr. Saturday
Penn State kicker <a class="link rapid-noclick-resp" href="/ncaaf/players/243264/" data-ylk="slk:Joey Julius">Joey Julius</a> has 19 touchbacks this season. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
Penn State kicker Joey Julius has 19 touchbacks this season. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)

Penn State kicker Joey Julius has made a name for himself this season.

Julius, listed at 5-foot-10 and 258 pounds, has become a favorite among college football fans for delivering two huge hits on kickoffs against Kent State and Michigan. The sophomore connected on 10-of-12 field goals for the Nittany Lions last season, but was notably absent from spring practice and during parts of the summer.

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On Monday, he revealed why in a Facebook post.

Julius explained that he received treatment at McCallum Place in St. Louis for an eating disorder.

“After a long consideration of not only myself, my family and my team I have decided to go public about my absence from the team during spring ball of 2016 and through this summer,” Julius wrote. “I was admitted into the McCallum Place on May 9th for eating disorders. Due to my increase in not only weight but also depression and anxiety my team physicians started to notice not only a change in my overall happiness but also my performance as a normal human being.

“Throughout this whole process I learned a lot about myself. I learned that for the last 11 years of my life I have suffered through a disorder known as binge eating disorder. Although I showed signs of bulimia through stints of purging from extreme anxiety placed on myself, I am certain that binge eating disorder is my true diagnosis through extensive care this summer for about three months of treatment in St. Louis, Missouri until July 26th.

“In order to come to this conclusion I have no one to thank except for Coach James Franklin and my training staff and doctors that stuck with me throughout this whole process. They all noticed that I was not myself and that I needed extensive care such as the program in St. Louis that I attended this summer.”

Julius went on to say that if anybody (“guy or girl”) is struggling with similar issues, he would “be in immediate contact to help in any way” he can or “to provide information or insight” on his struggles.

On the field, Tyler Davis emerged as Penn State’s top field goal kicker while Julius focuses on kickoffs. Through five games, Julius has 19 touchbacks while Davis is a perfect 17-of-17 on field goals in his career.

Penn State improved to 3-2 on Saturday with a win over Minnesota.

For more Penn State news, visit BlueWhiteIllustrated.com.

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Sam Cooper is a writer for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!

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