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Utah football notes: Oregon QB plans to play against Utes

Published November 11, 2013 5:10 pm

Utah football notes • Mariota practices despite knee injury.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Oregon quarterback Marcus Mariota might not be 100 percent, but he still plans to play against Utah on Saturday.

Mariota, who was hindered by a left knee injury in Oregon's 26-20 loss to Stanford on Thursday, took all the reps with the first team in Monday's practice, according to The Oregonian.

"My knee is what it is," he told the newspaper. "That's not an excuse. I'm not going to let it be an excuse."

Mariota has been tight-lipped on the nature of the injury, which he apparently suffered in the first half of a 42-14 win over UCLA on Oct. 26.

He hasn't been as effective in the run game since then, rushing for just 18 yards on seven carries against the Bruins and losing 16 yards on six carries against the Cardinal.

Utah coach Kyle Whittingham said the Utes were expecting to see Mariota on the field Saturday.

"He is one of the best, if not the best, in the country," he said.

Punting prowess

Sophomore punter Tom Hackett continues to lead the Pac-12 and rank 12th nationally in punting, averaging 44.3 yards on his 54 punts.

He had 70-yarder against ASU, the 15th-longest punt in school history.

Hackett said he already has been watching film of Oregon returner Bralon Addison, who is third nationally averaging 19.7 yards per return.

"He is a hell of a player," Hackett said. "I've been watching film of how and where to kick it."

Hackett also leads the Pac-12 in punts inside the 20-yard line with 22, including seven inside the 10-yard line.

Of note

Utah's game at Washington State on Nov. 23 will kick off at 1:30 p.m. MST and will be televised on the Pac-12 Networks. ... Redshirt freshman Justin Thomas is listed as the co-starter at cornerback with Davion Orphey. —

Utah at Oregon

P Saturday, 2 p.m. MST

TV • FS1