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The Times
  • COLLEGE FOOTBALL: With Gray hurt, Shortell to start against Syracuse

  • SEPTEMBER 18 COLLEGE FOOTBALL



    Minnesota has all but ruled out quarterback MarQueis Gray of this week’s game because of a sprained left ankle.



    Coach Jerry Kill said Tuesday that he told Gray his goal should be to heal enough to be Max Shortell’s backup when the Gophers host Syracuse on Saturday night.

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  • Minnesota has all but ruled out quarterback MarQueis Gray of this week’s game because of a sprained left ankle.
    Coach Jerry Kill said Tuesday that he told Gray his goal should be to heal enough to be Max Shortell’s backup when the Gophers host Syracuse on Saturday night.
    “That’s a pretty drastic goal, but you’ve got to have something to shoot for, so we’ll see how it works out,” Kill said.
    Kill noted Gray’s return in two weeks from a painful turf toe injury last season and refused to declare Gray out for a certain period of time, but the senior has a high sprain that typically takes up to a month to recover from.
    Gray also hurt his knee on the running play against Western Michigan when his left leg was bent backward by a pile of tacklers, but Kill said there’s no structural damage there.
    If Gray can’t play, freshman Philip Nelson — whom the Gophers would prefer to redshirt — will be the backup behind the sophomore Shortell, who relieved Gray on Saturday against Western Michigan and threw three touchdown passes.
    Minnesota also played last weekend without starting center Zach Mottla, who has an unspecified injury, with Zac Epping replacing Mottla and Caleb Bak starting in Epping’s place at right guard.
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