Tuesday practice notes

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One thing that stood out from Tuesday's Northern Illinois practice was the absence of true freshman running back Keith Harris Jr.

However, it's nothing serious. He just had the flu.

Harris came out of nowhere to score three touchdowns during Saturday's scrimmage, and his reps increased Monday. NIU coach Dave Doeren said he still isn't sure whether he'll redshirt or not, but Harris is definitely in the mix for carries.

• I asked Doeren which other true freshmen are currently scheduled to forgo redshirts. The only freshmen he knows will play are cornerback Marlon Moore and tight end Desroy Maxwell.

• Other true freshman I could see getting some playing time this season are Harris, wide receiver Charlie Miller and defensive tackle Mario Jones. Miller's an interesting story because he only played one season of high school football in Vero Beach, Fla. I think he's had a strong camp, but depth isn't an issue at wide receiver.

• Senior wideout Perez Ashford made two nice catches Tuesday. He had to make a pretty good leap to catch one ball, and the other was a nice diving grab.

• Junior cornerback Jhony Faustin was in the full-contact white jersey. He's been limited throughout camp while recovering from a broken leg, which he suffered in spring practice. Senior Demetrius Stone was still taking reps with the first team. Both players were listed as starters opposite Rashaan Melvin on the Huskies' preseason depth chart.

• Check out my video interview with NIU offensive tackle Tyler Loos following practice.

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Will the NIU football team play for the MAC title this year?
Yes
No
Too soon to tell