Senior running back Re'quan Boyette, Duke's presumed starter before fall practice began, will likely take a redshirt this season after he underwent arthroscopic surgery on his leg in August, head coach David Cutcliffe announced Tuesday.
"We're getting close to [deciding]," Cutcliffe said. "I watched him run today. He's not close. We're real close to looking like Re'quan will be redshirted. That's what my anticipation is at this point."
Boyette, elected a captain by his teammates before the injury, led Duke last year with 472 yards and two touchdowns on the ground just one year after pacing the Blue Devil ground attack as a sophomore. He shined in Duke's spring practices under Cutcliffe, racking up 139 yards on 18 carries in its last intrasquad scrimmage before the spring game, and was expected to break out this fall before going down Aug. 10 with a leg injury.
Before Cutcliffe announced Boyette was likely to be redshirted, Boyette's backup and good friend Clifford Harris said he would expect Boyette to take the redshirt if it was an option.
"I think he's that type of person, that if it came down to it, he would," Harris said. "I know he's pretty shaken up that it's his last season, so I think he's the type of person who's willing to work to come up and help the team next year.... Now that I think about it, it will be pretty good if he did come back, especially with the experience everyone else would have. It will be really good to have him as a fifth-year guy."
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