Suspended players to return for ENMU

CNJ staff

PORTALES — Eastern New Mexico University football coach Mark Ribaudo said Tuesday that four players suspended last week for “violation of university policy” will be active for Saturday’s Lone Star Conference South Division game at 14th-ranked Texas A&M-Kingsville.

Included were sophomore quarterback J.J. Harp, the NCAA Division II leader in passing yards per game (463), and starting sophomore wide receiver Darian Dale, who has 34 catches for 427 yards and two touchdowns.

The others suspended were backups Michael Henderson and Shonte Patterson. Ribaudo said Henderson is a key member of Greyhounds special teams.

Ribaudo didn’t say whether Harp or Dale would start in Saturday’s game.

“They’re just trying to work back into the lineup,” he said. “That’ll be a decision we make later on in the week. We just want to see how everybody performs (in practice).”

Freshman Wes Wood of Muleshoe stepped in for Harp at QB and completed 41-of-74 passes for 320 yards and three touchdowns in a 30-20 loss to then-No. 13 Tarleton State. The Texans, though, intercepted Wood four times in coming from behind in the second half.