STANFORD — Almost a week after signing day, Stanford might have landed its biggest addition heading into next season.
The school announced Monday that Tyler Gaffney is leaving professional baseball to make a surprise return to the football team. After a year of playing in the minors for the Pittsburgh Pirates, Gaffney will rejoin the Cardinal for the second half of spring practices when he enrolls in classes again April 1.
"As I have grown and matured over the past year, I have come to realize how much I missed my football family at Stanford and how much I missed the game of football," Gaffney said in a statement.
Gaffney called it the "ideal time" to return to Stanford, which won the Pac-12 Conference and Rose Bowl last season. He said he wanted to finish his degree, double majoring in sociology and psychology, and explore his football potential.
The two-sport player also thanked the Pirates for the opportunity that "permitted me to grow and mature in character."