Following an inexplicable loss to a Colorado team that had fired their head coach less than a week ago, Iowa State stands at 5-6 on the season and will need to win this coming weekend in order to become bowl eligible.
Unfortunately for the Cyclones, and if they are going to qualify for the postseason for the second straight year, they’ll have to do so without their starting quarterback.
In the fourth quarter of ISU’s 34-14 loss to Buffaloes, Austen Arnaud went down with a significant injury to his left knee as he was being sacked. Arnaud fumbled on the play, and it was returned 45 yards for a touchdown that stretched the Buffaloes lead to 34-7 with just over 11 minutes left in the game.
The lost fumble, though, paled in comparison to the loss of a player who will be sidelined for the rest of the season and, as he’s a senior, his career.
“He’s given his heart and soul to this program and he did it again today,” ISU coach Paul Rhoads said.
The exact nature of the injury is not known, although it’s believed to be a tear of the ACL. The extent of the damage will be determined by an MRI that will be performed once the swelling in the joint goes down.
Jerome Tiller, who replaced Arnaud following the injury, travels to No. 20 Missouri Saturday.