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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Arizona football: Wildcats’ defensive line depth takes a hit with loss of Allen and Fotu


Defensive Line #42 Anthony Fotu intercepts the ball and is tackled by Quarterback #4 Sean Collins. Fotu was removed from UA’s roster last week.

Three-star junior college transfer, Josh Allen, failed to meet academic requirements and will not be playing for the Arizona football team this season, the Arizona Daily Star reported on Wednesday night.

Allen, a product of Long Beach Community College, is listed at 6-foot-4 and 260 pounds and was viewed as a prospect that could make an immediate impact at Arizona, while adding another dimension to the Wildcats’ 4-2-5 defensive scheme.

Allen had 58 tackles and seven sacks last season for LBCC. rated Allen as the 50th-best prospect in the 2016 recruiting class.

Loss of Allen thins UA’s defensive line depth

Arizona’s defense has holes at the linebacker position and the secondary, but the defensive line couldn’t afford to lose another player. It lost not only Allen, but also Anthony Fotu, a 2015 junior college transfer, who was removed from the team’s online roster last week.

Fotu played in four games in 2015 and had an interception against Oregon State on Oct. 10.

Arizona’s defense was ranked No. 113 in yards allowed among FBS teams in 2015, as it coughed up 188.5 rushing yards per game and 274.8 passing yards per game.

The team’s defensive line struggled to consistently put pressure on quarterbacks and clog running lanes — an area in need of improvement in 2016.

Since Reggie Gilbert graduated, the Wildcats are left with Sani Fuimaono, Calvin Allen and Parker Zellers as the only members of the defensive line with a fair amount of game experience. There are other possible newcomers in the mix, but the inexperience and lack of depth at defensive line could come back to bite the Wildcats once again.

Arizona begins practice on Aug. 4 with plenty of questions to be answered, but perhaps none are more important than those surrounding the defensive line and its depth and talent level — or lack thereof.

Follow Justin Spears on Twitter

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