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WSU medical staff clears QB Tuel to play

PULLMAN – Washington State quarterback Jeff Tuel, who fractured his left clavicle Sept. 3, Wednesday was cleared to play this weekend by the school’s medical staff.

“I’m ready to go,” Tuel said prior to practice. “It feels good, strong. A little soreness here and there, but nothing serious.

“I’m excited to be out here. I want to win this game. That’s all I’m looking forward to in this upcoming game and that’s what I’m concentrating on.”

WSU coach Paul Wulff said after practice that Tuel, who split time with Marshall Lobbestael in team sessions, would play when he “knocks some of the rust off.”

“There’s going to be natural rust and those type of things, just because of lack or playing time,” Wulff said. “But the only way he’s going to do it is by practicing, getting more reps. That will help him clean some of that off.”

Tuel, a right-hander who threw for 2,780 yards in starting all 12 games as a sophomore last season, broke his clavicle in the opener against Idaho State.

In his absence, Lobbestael, a fifth-year senior, has led the Cougars to a 3-2 overall record (1-1 in Pac-12 play) by throwing for 1,570 yards, 15 touchdowns and posting a quarterback rating of 160.1, fourth best in the Pac-12.

Though the two shared practice repetitions Wednesday, Wulff won’t commit to Tuel playing against seventh-ranked Stanford (5-0, 3-0) in WSU’s homecoming game Saturday. He did, however, assess his possible impact.

“He’s one of the leaders on our football team,” Wulff said. “And anytime you can get one of your leaders of your team back, it’s always a boost.”

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