The Arizona Wildcats don’t have a lot of pass-catching options on the outside this season, and their depth just took another hit with senior receiver Cam Denson expected to medically retire from football, Rich Rodriguez announced Wednesday after practice.
The former four-star recruit from Tucson’s Salpointe Catholic High School entered the program with high expectations as a defensive back. Denson held offers to Oklahoma, Notre Dame, UCLA and Washington, among others, and was ranked the No. 15 corner in the nation.
In his first two seasons at corner, Denson registered 60 tackles and five interceptions, but was prone to giving up a big play downfield.
As he approached his junior season, Denson asked Rodriguez to switch to wide receiver, a position he said he felt more comfortable with. Both Anu Solomon and Brandon Dawkins raved about Denson’s vertical and ability to be a deep ball threat.
In his debut season on offense in 2016, Denson had 15 receptions for 242 yards and two touchdowns — still not quite the production you would like to see from a former top-150 recruit.
Denson was expected to have a breakout season in 2017, but he suffered a foot injury injury in the spring, and never got healthy. The Tucson native had one catch for five yards against Houston in Week 2, but that was the only game he played in.
Rodriguez has mentioned that Denson could apply for a medical redshirt, but that doesn’t appear to be the case anymore — an unfortunate end to what could have been a stellar career for the hometown hero.