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BYU TE Hank Tuipulotu Injures ACL For Second Time In Cougar Career

18FTB TV- Tuipulotu, Hank 04 18FTB Photo Day ESPN (TV) Portraits August 8, 2018 Photography by Savannah Tittle/BYU © BYU PHOTO 2018 All Rights Reserved photo@byu.edu (801)422-7322

PROVO, Utah – One of the most explosive playmakers through the first week of BYU fall camp has gone down with an ACL injury.

Redshirt freshman tight end Hank Tuipulotu re-injured his ACL this week in practice according to tight ends coach Steve Clark in an interview he had on Wednesday with KOVO 960.

The length of time Tuipulotu will be out for this ACL injury is not known at this time.  Last season, Tuipulotu, the son to former BYU great Peter, injured his ACL last September in the week leading up to the Washington game.

A native of Fort Mill, South Carolina, Tuipulotu made a highlight diving catch on day one of fall camp last week (see video above). Tuipulotu signed with BYU in the class of 2016, Kalani Sitake’s first recruiting class as head coach of the Cougars.  Tuipulotu signed with BYU over in-state SEC school South Carolina.

Last month on the Cougar Tracks Podcast in our position previews leading up to fall camp, I stated that if Moroni Laulu-Pututau wasn’t ready, Tuipulotu could step in and give BYU the potential to line up in 12 personnel.  12 personnel consists of one running back and two tight ends.

After junior Matt Bushman, a Mackey Award watch list candidate, Tuipulotu was next in line in terms of reps and opportunities in practices.  This loss is magnified for BYU as the academic status of Moroni Laulu-Pututau remains up in the air.

BYU still has options at tight end, but Tuipulotu’s injury is a setback.  The Cougars are looking to replace Dallin Holker who left this past spring to serve a Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints mission.  Other options at tight end for BYU include true freshman Isaac Rex, redshirt sophomore Joe Tukuafu, sophomore Alema Pilimai, redshirt junior Kyle Griffitts, and true freshmen Carter Wheat and Masen Wake.

Like Tuipulotu, none of those players have played a down in games during their BYU careers.

Mitch Harper is a BYU Insider for KSLsports.com and host of the Cougar Tracks Podcast and Cougar Sports Saturday (Saturday from 12-3 pm) on KSL Newsradio. Follow him on Twitter: @Mitch_Harper.