Following previously-ranked No. 4 Texas A&M’s loss to lowly Mississippi State, common thought has Washington in the driver’s seat for the final College Football Playoff spot.
The Huskies got some devastating news on Monday though, as it was announced the team’s top pass rusher and team sack leader, senior outside linebacker Joe Mathis would undergo season-ending foot surgery.
Mathis reportedly attempted to rehab the foot in hopes of returning, but he won’t take the field again for Washington after suffering the injury in a win over Oregon in October, per Seattle Times.
Mathis had 25 tackles, 7.5 tackles for a loss and five sacks this season over just six games, helping push Washington out toward the front in terms of national production with 24 team sacks. Without Mathis, the Huskies have just three sacks.
Washington will play host to the surging USC Trojans on Saturday, before finishing the regular season against Arizona State and at Washington State.
One-loss teams such as Ohio State and Louisville are waiting and ready to strike if the Huskies slip up even once.