The Arizona Wildcats didn’t just lose another game on Saturday, they may have lost another quarterback for the rest of the season.
Coach Jedd Fisch said during his postgame radio interview, following the UA’s 34-0 loss at Colorado, that redshirt freshman Gunner Cruz is likely done for the year with an injury.
Fisch confirmed later that it was a thumb injury, saying it was "not a good situation, it doesn't sound like. I don't think we can get Gunner back this year."
Cruz, who made his third start of the season and first since Week 2, appeared to injure his right thumb on a 14-yard run midway through the third quarter. His next pass was severely underthrown, and one play later he threw an interception that Colorado returned 50 yards for a touchdown to make it 20-0 at the time.
Will Plummer, who came in for Cruz after that and threw for 71 yards and an interception on 7-of-17 passing, is likely to start for Arizona when it hosts Washington on Friday night, which would be the third of his career and second this season after starting against NAU. He’s the only scholarship quarterback left on the roster that isn’t injured, as redshirt sophomore Jordan McCloud was lost for the season after suffering right knee and ankle injuries in last week’s 34-16 home loss to UCLA.
Cruz’s injury may force the Wildcats to move wide receiver Jamarye Joiner back to QB, the position he was recruited to Arizona to play by Rich Rodriguez before Kevin Sumlin and his staff switched him to receiver after his freshman season in 2018.
Joiner took a couple snaps at QB against Colorado, operating out of the Wildcat and carrying the ball twice for three yards. He threw an incomplete pass on a trick play but a penalty negated the result, and a week earlier he threw a TD pass to Michael Wiley on another trick play.
This story will be updated.