Iowa senior defensive lineman Drew Ott will not return to the Hawkeyes for a fifth season, as his application for a medical hardship waiver has been denied by the NCAA.
Ott announced the denial of said waiver in a post to his Instagram.
Finding out that my time has come to an end here at Iowa leaves me with a lot of people to thank. Thank you to my coaches for giving me the opportunity, believing in me, and staying with me through this whole process. Hawkeye fans, you have been amazing and thank you for the constant support. I wouldn’t have been able to do any of this without my friends and family. #onceahawkalwaysahawk #TheDecision
A former three-star recruit from rural Nebraska, Ott tore his ACL six games into the 2015 season and applied for the waiver on the basis that he hadn’t appeared in any of Iowa’s second-half games. The only issue was that, per NCAA bylaws, Ott had appeared in more than 30 percent of Iowa’s games at the time of the injury itself. Iowa tried to base the appeal further on the fact that Ott dislocated his elbow in 2014 and did not play much prior to tearing his ACL.
Sure enough, as was reported in a tweet by local beat writer Scott Dochterman, longtime Hawkeyes coach Kirk Ferentz is not pleased.
Ferentz: "I’m disappointed for Drew and I’m really quite frankly disappointed with the decision and disappointed with the process."
— Scott Dochterman (@ScottDochterman) April 13, 2016
Just what happens next for Drew Ott is a mystery. He did not participate in the NFL Scouting Combine because he was waiting out his appeal, filed nearly six months ago, and his best bet at this point is probably to simply try out for a team once his knee is healed up in hopes of making the practice squad. All in all, in his time at Iowa, he posted 121 tackles with 15.5 sacks and five forced fumbles.
The young man can clearly play, so now it’s just a matter of which NFL team is willing to take a chance on him.
*Featured Photo (above) credit to USA TODAY Sports