Welcome to Evanston, Illinois. Where when it rains.. it pours.
What's going on y'all, it's ChiSoxJonda back again for his once in every four months article. It's been a less than ideal start to the season for Northwestern University's Football team. Between the injury bug and the offensive woes, the Wildcats find themselves 1-3 heading into October. As for myself, fall is my favorite season but not when my favorite team SUCKS.
Today, head coach Pat Fitzgerald announced to the big boy media that the team will be without leading receiver Bennett Skowronek for the time being. The senior team captain is not only leading the team in receiving yards with 141 but he is also tied for the lead in receptions (12) through the first four games. Although Skowronek was the team's leading receiver as a sophomore, being the only senior receiver on a team with a brand new quarterback makes your role a little bit larger than the stat sheet suggests.
The injury that he suffered remains undisclosed. However, a spokesperson for the program confirmed on Monday that Skowronek had surgery and will be out for a while, though he did not clarify whether that meant for the season or not. A unique situation remains — Skowronek is a rarity for the 'Cats because he was never redshirted throughout his college career (the Cats redshirt more receivers a year than I write articles), as he appeared in a special teams-heavy role his freshman year. The NCAA rule for redshirting reads that as long the player appears in less than 25% (four games) of the team's REGULAR season matchups, then that player is eligible to redshirt. To this point, Skowronek has appeared in three games, as he sat out last week's contest against Wisconsin. That key fact makes him eligible to redshirt if need be. I reached out to Skowronek for comment on the injury considering the surgery seemingly came out of the blue, but he respectfully declined.
Alternatively, quarterback Hunter Johnson has had to leave two games to this point, one due to performance and another due to injury. Despite those occurrences, Johnson was listed as the starting QB on this week's two-deep depth chart. In the receiving game, look for junior Riley Lees and sophomore JJ Jefferson to step up in Skowronek's absence this weekend in Lincoln.
Be on the lookout for some news in the coming weeks as Northwestern travels to Nebraska this weekend to play the Huskers at 3 PM central time on FOX.
Until next time, feel better Bennett, and Go Cats!
Featured Photo: NUSports.com