Hasty rethinks, returns to Huskies

Running back J.R. Hasty returned to the Washington football team for practice Monday after quitting the Huskies last week because he was disappointed with his lack of playing time this season.

Coach Tyrone Willingham did not offer a reason why Hasty decided to return. Willingham announced last Thursday that Hasty had quit the team.

The son of former Washington State and ex-NFL Pro Bowl cornerback James Hasty will be eligible to play for Washington at Stanford on Saturday, Willingham said.

Hasty is a redshirt junior who had 5,493 career rushing yards at Bellevue High School, as well as 50 touchdowns as a senior there. He’s considered one of Willingham’s top recruits.

But Hasty has played in only two games this season, with just six carries for 18 yards.

Washington (2-6, 0-5 Pac-10) is in the conference basement this season. The Huskies blew a 15-point lead in the fourth quarter and lost 48-41 to Arizona last weekend in Seattle.

ASU, Oregon on ESPN

ESPN will air Saturday night’s Arizona State-Oregon game, ensuring that a meeting of two highly ranked teams will be nationally televised after it was originally scheduled to only be broadcast locally.

ESPN reached an agreement with the Pac-10 and Fox Sports Net on Monday to show the matchup between No. 4 Oregon (7-1) and No. 6 Arizona State (8-0), a contest that could have national championship implications.

The game starts at 3:45 p.m. PDT.

With neither team picked to finish near the top of the Pac-10 standings before the season, the game was going to be broadcast locally in Oregon, Arizona and southern California. FSN will still show the contest in some areas. The Oregon Sports Network will distribute the game in the state.

BSU’s Johnson cleared

After missing two games with a bruised kidney, Boise State running back Ian Johnson has been cleared by team doctors to return to practice.

Coach Chris Petersen said Monday that Johnson’s status for Saturday’s game with San Jose State is uncertain. Petersen says a lot depends on Johnson’s health this week and ability to get back in game shape after two weeks of rest.

“Unless we have a weird setback of any sort, which we don’t anticipate, we’ll get him in the mix,” Petersen said. “We want to be smart with him. We’ve got to get his legs going, see how he holds up conditioning wise.”

Johnson is the emotional leader on offense and he leads the team with 693 yards rushing and nine touchdowns. His rushing totals are second in the Western Athletic Conference.

But the 21st-ranked Broncos have hardly missed a beat offensively in his absence.

Backups Jeremy Avery and D.J. Harper combined to rush for 277 yards and four TDs in Friday’s 34-21 win at Fresno State, becoming the first freshmen to each run for more than 100 yards in a game since 1977.


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