Wyoming safety Luke Ruff's hopes for one more football season has been shut down by the NCAA.

UW pursued a medical hardship waiver for Ruff, a senior starter who did not play the rest of the season after sustaining a shoulder injury in Wyoming's game against Nevada on Oct. 6. That request, and an appeal, were denied, according to Wyoming coach Dave Christensen.

Ruff was a long shot to receive the waiver. NCAA rules set the limit of participation before injury at three games or 30 percent (whichever number is greater between the two) of a season. If the player participates more than that, the chance of receiving the waiver is slim. However, the NCAA sometimes grants exceptions to its own rule.

For Ruff, that's not the case. He played in four full games and part of a fifth before his injury. Christensen said Ruff will continue to pursue his degree in civil engineering.

Ruff's incomplete senior season ended with 34 tackles, bringing his career total to 175. He forced two fumbles, recovered one, and deflected two passes while at UW.

Wyoming will miss Ruff's leadership more than his statistical contributions. The co-captain was  known as a quarterback of the UW secondary, which he continued to help coach after his injury this year.


Reach reporter Ben Frederickson at ben.frederickson@trib.com. Follow him on Twitter @Ben_Fred.

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