Miami head coach Manny Diaz has announced that redshirt sophomore Bubba Bolden will miss the rest of the 2019 season with an ankle injury suffered in Saturday’s 27-10 win at Florida State.
The injury occurred early in the third quarter after Bolden intercepted a pass thrown by FSU quarterback Alex Hornibrook intended for receiver Tamorrion Terry. Defended by DJ Ivey, Terry let the ball hit his chest, sending the ball tumbling towards the ground until Bolden dove to catch the ball. With his first interception as a Hurricane still in hand, he leapt up in excitement and started his sprint towards the Miami sideline. In the same vein of excitement, sophomore safety Gurvan Hall and Bolden leapt up to bump shoulder pads. After the in-air collision, Bubba Bolden landed awkwardly on his leg, sustaining what has now been identified as a season-ending ankle injury.
“We will not have Bubba for the rest of the year,” Diaz said on Monday. “Unfortunately, he’ll be out for the season, which is tough on our defense because he was really starting to play at a very high level. We’ll have to do what we always do. We’ll have to rely on the depth we have at the safety position and move on.”
“It’s a huge loss,” said defensive coordinator Blake Baker. “He was becoming more and more a part of what we were becoming defensively. It’s just one of those freak deals that nobody means to do. I don’t think any harm was meant by it.”
Upon entry into the starting line-up for Miami, Bubba Bolden has been a key part in Miami’s stellar defense. Bolden has 11 total tackles for Miami this season and has forced a fumble against Pitt in addition to the interception. As a transfer student from the University of Southern California, his presence on the team has been nothing but positive. Last week, he had his best game of the year against Pitt, with four solo tackles and a forced fumble. Bolden sat out the first four games of the season as the NCAA was determining his eligibility.
Miami can attempt to apply for a medical redshirt on Bolden’s behalf, though there is no guarantee that he will be able to. The safety has appeared in five games this season and already took a redshirt in 2018 while still at USC.