The Colorado football team is losing a pair of offensive linemen.
CU head coach Mike MacIntyre has announced that junior Dillon Middlemiss is ending his football career with the Buffaloes to focus on academics, while redshirt freshman Grant Polley will sit out the upcoming season for personal reasons.
A 2015 graduate of Pomona High School, Middlemiss played in 14 games over the past two seasons. Last season, he played in all 12 games, with all 59 of his snaps coming with the field goal/extra point unit. In 2016, Middlemiss played in two games on the offensive line, with 25 snaps against Idaho State and six against Oregon State.
Middlemiss was coming off his best spring and was praised by coaches as one of the linemen who had made the biggest improvement in the offseason. With junior guard/center Tim Lynott out with an Achilles injury in the spring, Middlemiss played most of the spring with the first-team offense at right guard.
Even with Lynott expected back this fall, Middlemiss figured to be in competition for at least one of the top backup spots. CU's press release said Middlemiss will instead turn his attention to graduating.
Polley, from Denton, Tex., was a part of the 2017 recruiting class and redshirted last season, while also dealing with injury and illness. Polley's weight dipped to around 250 pounds, but in April, co-offensive coordinator/offensive line coach Klayton Adams said he hoped Polley would be in position to compete this fall "because he's a very talented guy.
Polley will not be enrolled at CU in the fall.
The departures of Middlemiss and Polley leave CU with 83 players on scholarship, two below the NCAA maximum. It also reduces the Buffs to 15 offensive linemen on scholarship, 11 of which have never played in a game for CU.
As of now, CU is expected to go into the season with four upperclassmen on the line: senior tackle Josh Kaiser; and juniors Aaron Haigler (guard/tackle), Brett Tonz (guard/center) and Lynott (guard/center).
Contact staff writer Brian Howell at email@example.com or twitter.com/BrianHowell33.