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Clemson running back Zac Brooks out for season with foot injury

Sam Cooper
Dr. Saturday
NCAA Football: Clemson at Syracuse
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Oct 5, 2013; Syracuse, NY, USA; Clemson Tigers running back Zac Brooks (24) celebrates his second quarter touchdown with quarterback Tajh Boyd (10) and offensive tackle Brandon Thomas (63) during the second quarter against the Syracuse Orange at the Carrier Dome. Clemson defeated Syracuse 49-14. (Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports)

Clemson will be without its returning leading rusher for the entire 2014 season.

The program announced Wednesday that junior running back Zac Brooks injured his foot during Monday night’s practice which will sideline him for the season. Per TigerIllustrated.com, Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney said that Brooks will redshirt this season.

“Zac was having an outstanding camp and was ready for a terrific year,” Swinney said in a release. “The plan is for Zac to sit out this year due to the injury and come back next year as a redshirt junior. This is a big loss, because he is such a reliable player in all phases of the game. He knows the offense inside and out.”

The 6-foot, 200-pound Brooks has registered 74 carries for 365 yards and two touchdowns in his career. He also caught nine passes for 92 yards and one score.

A native of Jonesboro, Ark., Brooks averaged 5.1 yards per carry for the Tigers last season in a backup role behind Roderick McDowell. He was expected to be a big factor among Clemson’s slew of talented running backs.

In Brooks’ absence, senior D.J. Howard, junior C.J. Davidson and redshirt freshman Wayne Gallman are in line to split the majority of the carries behind first-year starting quarterback Cole Stoudt.

Brooks was a four-star recruit in Clemson’s 2012 class. He was rated as the No. 202 overall player in the class and the top player from Arkansas.

Coming off an Orange Bowl victory and an 11-2 season, the Tigers’ will open up on the road against Georgia to open the season on August 30.

For more Clemson news, visit TigerIllustrated.com.

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