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Cougar Tracks: Mendenhall says Nelson "probable" for Saturday

Cougar Tracks: Mendenhall says Nelson "probable" for Saturday



Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

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Tuesday marked the second straight day that James Lark took all the reps at quarterback for BYU, as Riley Nelson continues to recover from a rib cartilage injury.

Head coach Bronco Mendenhall called Nelson "probable" for Saturday's game at New Mexico State, but said it was too early to say if BYU's senior starter would play in Las Cruces. When asked if there was a drop-dead date when a decision had to made, Bronco said, "usually by Thursday; they have to be able to participate some on Thursday."

While Bronco seems willing to wait a few more days, offensive coordinator Brandon Doman would like to make the decision sooner.

"I'd like to," Doman said, when asked if he would prefer naming a starter by tomorrow (Wednesday). "I don't know if the doctors or coach will be prepared to make that decision. For James' mindset, I'd like for him to know a couple days in advance."

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With all of the criticism surrounding Riley Nelson, I asked him a few weeks ago what he thought his legacy would be at BYU. He told me it doesn't matter what he wants it to be, fans will make up their own mind.

I asked offensive coordinator Brandon Doman what he thought Nelson would be remembered for, and he called Nelson "probably the most tenacious, competitive guy I've been around in eight years."

"To know what he's battled through physically...when you get knocked down, you have to chose to get up, and he has gotten up every single time," said Doman. "I've been around some quarterbacks or players or people that don't get up off the ground, and he got up every time. I'll love him for that forever for being tenacious that way and never quitting."

When asked if it would be fair for Riley to take most of the blame for Saturday's loss at San Jose State, Doman said, "Riley's the quarterback at BYU. Whether it's rightly or not, or justified, it's part of the job; he understands that...but he shouldn't take all the blame--no way he should take all the blame for that game. There were a lot of other factors that caused that loss to occur. It certainly wasn't all because of Riley."

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You can listen to today's post-practice audio with Bronco Mendenhall, Doman and linebacker Spencer Hadley by clicking on the link to the left in "Cougar Cuts."

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Saturday's game at New Mexico State can be heard on KSL Newsradio 102.7 FM/1160 AM. Pregame coverage will begin at 11:30am MT; kick-off is set for 1:30pm.

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Jason Shepherd

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