By Ryan Divish
The Montana State University-Northern football team had remained relatively injury-free this preseason. However, the Lights' fortunes changed when senior starting tailback Travis Crawford went down with a slight crack in his right fibula that could keep him out of action for up to three weeks.
Crawford, a senior, injured the leg during Thursday's practice when defensive lineman Bomont Somerfeld rolled over it as Crawford was blocking during 11-on-11 action. He was able to walk off the field under his own power and even tried to jog on it. But X-rays on Monday showed a hairline crack in the fibula.
"Hopefully, we'll have him back in at least three weeks," said Lights head coach Walt Currie. "It's a tough injury because he is one of the best running backs in the conference."
Crawford, who was on crutches at Monday night's practice, was relatively upbeat and was a little more optimistic than Currie.
"I hoping to play, legitimately, by the Dickinson State game," Crawford said.
The Lights open their season against DSU on Sept. 7 in Dickinson. However, while he would love to play that first game, Crawford admitted that the conference game the following week against Rocky Mountain College is more important.
"They may hold me out because of that," Crawford said. "Obviously the Rocky game is much more important because it's conference."
Currie said seniors Scott Ramsey and Richard Jarvis and sophomore Bill Templer will fill in by committee for Crawford.
Senior cornerback Brian Kott did not dress for Monday's practice. Kott, who had knee reconstruction in the spring, said he's experiencing some swelling in the knee and will probably begin doing light work this week at practice but that it would be unlikely he would play in Saturday's final fall scrimmage.
Overall, the Lights have stayed healthy during fall camp, which is something Currie hopes will continue.
"You just want to make it through this week and the scrimmage without anything major happening," Currie said.
Northern will hold its final scrimmage of fall practice on Saturday at 1 p.m. at Havre Middle School. The Lights' first home game will be on Sept. 23 against Montana Tech.