UCLA will be without its leading tackler for the Holiday Bowl because of COVID protocols.

Qwuantrezz Knight announced on social media Thursday that due to protocols he’ll be unable to play in the Dec. 28 bowl game against NC State.

The senior defensive back also officially declared for the NFL Draft in his message to fans on Twitter, though that piece of things is more of a formality. A return to UCLA for this past season was his sixth year of college, exhausting all of his eligibility.

Either way, it’s a tough way for a career to end, and UCLA will surely miss him as it wrangles with NC State in the Holiday Bowl. The dynamic defensive back leads the team in tackles (66) and tackles for loss (8.5). He also has three pass breakups, 2.5 sacks, and a forced fumble this season.

“These two years at UCLA have been a life-changing experience and I am so thankful to have had this opportunity. I have built relationships and made memories that will last a lifetime,” wrote the Florida native who spent four years at Maryland and Kent State before arriving in Westwood. “Since a young age, it has been my dream to play in the NFL. Now, after graduating with a master’s degree in education, it’s time to pursue that dream. Unfortunately, due to Covid, I have no choice but to forego the holiday bowl. But with that said, I’m excited to announce that I’m declaring for the 2022 NFL Draft. Go Bruins!”

The Bruins (8-4) take on 18th-ranked NC State (9-3) next Tuesday.