Redshirt senior offensive lineman Chris Jacobson will miss the rest of the season, Pitt announced on Friday.
Jacobson left last Saturday's game against Iowa with a leg injury during Pitt's final offensive drive. He will apply to the NCAA for a medical hardship waiver that would give him a sixth year of eligibility at Pitt. Jacobson also suffered a season-ending injury to his right knee during his freshman year of 2007, which could gain extra consideration from the NCAA.
"Chris Jacobson is one of the most respected people in our program and I know every player and coach feels disappointment for him that he'll miss the rest of the year," head coach Todd Graham said in a press release. "Fortunately, we feel optimistic about his chances to receive a sixth year from the NCAA."
Jacobson was one of three returning starters on the offensive line (along with senior Lucas Nix and redshirt senior Jordan Gibbs), and he entered the season as one of Pitt's leaders on offense. Jacobson was also elected captain by his teammates and coaches.
This injury ends a streak of 17 consecutive starts dating back to the 2009 Meineke Car Care Bowl.
Jacoboson was replaced at left guard in the Iowa game by redshirt sophomore Cory King, who played the Panthers' final three offensive snaps in the 31-27 loss. King will start in place of Jacobson at left guard this week.
King worked his way up to starting right guard in spring camp and entered training camp as the starter there, but the coaching staff opted to move Nix from right tackle to right guard, Gibbs from left tackle to right tackle, and redshirt sophomore Juantez Hollins into the starting lineup at left tackle.
Graham has said since training camp that King is the first reserve at guard.
"He's got to be ready to go," Graham said Wednesday. "He's a guy that, all summer long, was one of the best guys in the weight room. He worked his tail off and we've got a lot of confidence that he can come in and get it done if he needs to."
With King in the starting lineup, redshirt freshman Matt Rotheram is now the top reserve at guard. Redshirt senior Greg Gaskins is the top reserve at tackle.