Arizona middle linebacker Cody Ippolito suffered a torn ACL for the third time and will miss the rest of the Wildcats’ season, according to Anthony Gimino of Tusconnewsnow.com. Ippolito injured his knee in Arizona’s loss to Utah on Saturday.
The 22-year-old missed the entire 2013 and 2015 seasons due to knee ligament tears, but the Arizona official roster lists him as a senior nonetheless. Conceivably, the fifth-year player could have received a medical redshirt for one of those two previous campaigns, but getting one now isn’t traditional. Ippolito played in six games for Arizona as that is a higher percentage of a team’s action than the NCAA allows for medical-hardship status.
So, Ippolito’s career with the Wildcats could well be over. If so, it will definitely take on a what-if aura, considering he only played one full season – in 2014.
The linebacker’s 28 tackles rank fourth on the team. He would ascend into the Arizona starting lineup after being a part-time starter in 2014, when he registered 52 stops and one sack. He made six tackles in each of the Wildcats’ past two games, contributing 1.5 sacks in that span as well.
A former two-star recruit, Ippolito was supposed to be contributor alongside NFL Draft pick Scooby Wright last season in Tuscon, but an ACL tear suffered in preseason workouts induced another lengthy rehab process he eventually surmounted en route back to the Wildcats’ defense.
After Wright’s departure, Ippolito finally ascended to the starting middle linebacker job. He notably recovered two fumbles for Arizona, who sit 2-4 halfway through the season. Senior Jake Matthews is listed as Ippolito’s backup on the Arizona depth chart. He has 12 tackles this season.