clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Arizona football countdown: 29 days, remembering Austin Hill's contributions and sacrifice at Arizona

Austin Hill was a semifinalist for the Biletnikoff Award in 2012, but he changed his role to help the team.

Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Unlike Juron Criner, no one has forgotten about Austin Hill. It'd be difficult to forget his huge contributions to the team last year, most notably by pulling down the Hill Mary to beat California.

But it's easy to forget just how good Austin Hill was. In 2012, Hill was a semifinalist for the Biletnikoff Award. He had 1364 yards, which was second in the Pac-12 (behind only Marqise Lee) and sixth in the country. He was primed for an even better 2013 and was beginning to garner some hype as an NFL prospect.

Then he tore his ACL in spring practice. His 2013 ended up being a lost season, though he told the Daily Wildcat that he gained a coach's perspective during that year.

After returning from the injury, Hill took on a somewhat different role for Arizona. With a ton of other talented (but smaller) receivers, Hill moved into a pseudo-tight end position. He didn't get as many looks and didn't get as many opportunities, but he didn't complain and he took advantage of those opportunities when they came:

It's not easy to take a backseat when you were one of the best receivers in the country. It's not easy for a wide receiver to move inside and block on patterns where you normally would run a route. And it's not easy to fight past an injury that ends the careers of many players. But Austin Hill did all that. I really hope he succeeds at the next level.