It sure has taken a long time, but it seems the NCAA has finally made a decision on Iowa defensive end Drew Ott — and it's not the decision Ott and the Hawkeyes were hoping for.
According to multiple reports Wednesday, Ott has been denied a waiver for a fifth season of eligibility and will depart Iowa for the NFL.
Can confirm. Drew Ott’s appeal for a medical hardship waiver has been denied by the NCAA. An NFL team will get a helluva deal.— Marc Morehouse (@marcmorehouse) April 13, 2016
Ott has been waiting months for a decision on whether or not he would be allowed to play a fifth year after battling several injuries last season. He appeared in six games while hampered by an elbow injury and was knocked out for the season after tearing his ACL against Illinois.
NCAA rules stipulate that a player cannot earn a medical redshirt if he appears in more than 30 percent of his team's games in a season, which of course Ott did. The NCAA did not deem Ott deserving of a waiver.
Ott has voiced his dismay over how long this process has taken, and he made it known during the NFL Draft Combine that he was hoping to return to Iowa City. But with that no longer an option, he will pursue an NFL career.
Ott was an integral part of the Hawkeyes' defense in each of the past two seasons. As a junior in 2014, he ranked fourth in the Big Ten with eight sacks. In limited action last season, he racked up five sacks, 7.5 tackles for loss and three forced fumbles.