Utah's Gionni Paul out for remainder of season

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SALT LAKE CITY — Redshirt junior linebacker Gionni Paul will miss the remainder of the season after undergoing surgery to his foot Wednesday, according to Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham.

Paul was plagued early in the season with the injury after breaking his foot during spring practices. Paul missed the first two games of the season, but played his first game in Utah’s win over Michigan where he had one interception and 14 total tackles. Paul had been playing through some injuries all season, including a broken hand following the Oregon State game.

“He’s been hobbled this year,” Whittingham said at Monday’s press conference. “He’s gone through a lot of stuff physically this year.”

Paul’s energy was a much-needed aspect of the defense as Utah started conference play. He ends the season with 61 total tackles, three tackles for loss for 11 yards, four interceptions for 17 yards, and one sack for a loss of seven yards.

At Monday’s press conference, Whittingham said Jason Fanaika would step in and play more minutes at linebacker. Also available for Saturday’s game is Jason Whittingham, who has been out for much of the season after sustaining an arm injury in the Fresno State game.

“Jason has been playing good football. Jason Fanaika has been a real pleasant surprise as far as making that (linebacker) transition in mid-season,” Whittingham said. “He’s done a really nice job for us.”

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Josh Furlong


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