Maxwell Smith’s medical waiver denied by NCAA

by Ryan Posner , Sports Editor

In past instances, San Diego State football has been successful in getting players an extra year of eligibility from the NCAA via an injury waiver.

Last season, cornerback J.J. Whitaker and linebacker Jake Fely were benefactors of the extra season.

But Tuesday, the school’s streak was ended as the NCAA denied quarterback Maxwell Smith’s bid for one more year of eligibility.

The petition for Smith’s extra year stemmed from time he had missed while with University of Kentucky, as well as SDSU.

He missed multiple games as a sophomore because of an ankle injury and missed four games his junior season due to a rotator cuff injury that required surgery.

Smith then graduated from Kentucky in 2014 and was immediately eligibly to to play at another school and chose SDSU.

After a heated battle last fall he won the starting job over sophomore Christian Chapman, and established himself as one of the most efficient quarterbacks in the country with a 13-2 touchdown-to-interception ratio through 12 starts.

The injury bug struck again for Smith on Nov. 12 last season when he tore his left ACL against University of Nevada, ending his year.

In his absence, Chapman led the team to a win over Air Force Academy for the Mountain West Championship, and a blowout win over University of Cincinnati in the Hawaii Bowl.

Because of Chapman’s success to end last season, it became clear from watching spring practices and the sentiment from head coach Rocky Long that the team would move forward with Chapman as the starter, regardless of Smith’s eligibility.

Entering the fall, the team will have redshirt-freshman Ryan Agnew, redshirt-freshman Mason Hall, junior Jimmy Walker and Chapman competing at the quarterback spot.