Nebraska will be without several players for its Big Ten opener against Rutgers on Saturday, according to coach Mike Riley.
Starting running back Tre Bryant will miss his second straight game with a knee injury. Junior Mikale Wilbon, who rushed 20 times for 90 yards against Northern Illinois last weekend, should shoulder the rushing load again.
Meanwhile, starting outside linebacker Marcus Newby is out with a hamstring injury he sustained against the Huskies. Linebacker Tyrin Ferguson stepped into Newby’s role for the rest of that game, but he’ll also be sidelined with an undisclosed injury. Ferguson had a boot on his right foot earlier this week.
Starting safety Joshua Kalu will also miss Saturday’s game with a hamstring injury.
Here’s what Riley said about other key Nebraska players who aren’t 100 percent healthy:
Wide receiver Stanley Morgan
“Stanley Morgan has had a … really hard time moving his head and neck all week, so he hasn’t practiced. We think it’s all soft tissue, so we think it could start feeling better in less than 48 hours, whatever that is. We’re hopeful for that. We’ll see how he is [Friday]. We are hopeful he is OK.”
Morgan would be a significant loss for a Nebraska offense that scored just 17 points against Northern Illinois.
In each of the Cornhuskers’ first three games, Morgan has at least five receptions and 94 yards. He’s racked up 299 total receiving yards so far, about 100 yards more than anyone else on the team. Morgan also has three touchdowns.
Offensive tackle David Knevel
“David Knevel has practiced just a little bit this week. Probably at best an emergency-type guy. We’ll see how he is tomorrow.”
Offensive lineman Matt Farniok
“Matt Farniok is kind of the same way. He has just gotten his cast and he’s dealing with that. He could possibly be an emergency lineman or in the punt shield like he did before.”