Created:Monday, August 31, 2009 11:01 p.m.CDT

MAC Notebook

Wide receiver Daniel Rodriguez has left the Northern Illinois football team. (Rob Winner –

Freshman wide receiver Daniel Rodriguez has decided to leave Northern Illinois, Huskies coach Jerry Kill confirmed during Monday's Mid-American Conference coaches teleconference.

"Daniel's situation, is he's decided that he would rather go home and not play football," Kill said.

Rodriguez was not at Friday's practice at Huskie Stadium and left NIU late last week.

"I think he's going to work for a chiropractor," Kill said. "His heart wasn't in it anymore."

Rodriguez was a part of a heralded recruiting class of freshmen wide receivers that brought high expectations to make an immediate impact on the field for the Huskies. Rodriguez ran with the No. 1 offense in fall camp two weeks ago, but fell behind fellow freshmen wideouts Martel Moore and Perez Ashford. Rodriguez starred at Gulliver Prep in Miami, Fla., and was expected to be at least a contributor at some point of his NIU career.

Moore and Ashford appeared on NIU's depth chart that was released Sunday. They are two of 12 true or redshirt freshmen listed, making for an especially young team among the players who could see snaps Saturday at Wisconsin in the season-opener.

"We feel like we have [some playmakers]," Kill said. "Now whether or not we have we'll see. We've got to bring some young guys along. I don't know if we'll throw them right into the fire. We'll have to see."

Ohio picks QB, for now: Ohio plays host to Connecticut on Saturday, and Bobcats coach Frank Solich said Theo Scott will start at quarterback ahead of Boo Jackson, but both will play.

"That primarily comes from the fact that Boo missed some practices during fall camp, got banged up a little bit and needed to take time to recover," Solich said. "We're going to play both, certainly in the first half. We'll see how that all plays out."

Chips' long trip: Central Michigan goes to Arizona to open the season, and with a mild summer across the Midwest, CMU coach Butch Jones finds himself educating his players on hydration and eating right before the trip.

"There's only so much you can do. The problem we've had throughout the course of training camp is that we had a couple of days of good heat, but lately the last couple weeks I feel like we've been practicing for October and November games rather than September games," Jones said.

Jones added that the Chippewas will not return from Arizona until 9:30 or 10 a.m. Sunday morning.

"The effects may linger after the game as opposed to before the game," Jones said.

Quotable: "Virtually our entire class has already verbally committed, which has never happened for us." – Ball State coach Stan Parrish on how last year's success has affected recruiting.

Will NIU football win the MAC this season?