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Marshall RB Rasheen Ali takes undisclosed leave of absence

NCAA Football: Marshall at Appalachian State

Sep 23, 2021; Boone, North Carolina, USA; Marshall Thundering Herd running back Rasheen Ali (22) runs back a kickoff for a touchdown during the second quarter against the Appalachian State Mountaineers at Kidd Brewer Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. -- Marshall running back Rasheen Ali, one of the nation’s top freshman rushers last season, is taking a leave of absence for undisclosed reasons, coach Charles Huff said.

Ali’s exit comes less than two weeks before Marshall opens the season Sept. 3 at home against Norfolk State of the Football Championship Subdivision.

Ali rushed for 1,401 yards and 23 touchdowns last season and was expected to be a big part of the offense again as Marshall enters its first season in the Sun Belt Conference.

No timetable was given for Ali’s return.

“Rasheen will be away from the team for some time, and as soon as he is mentally, physically and emotionally ready to return, he will be back,” Huff said in a statement. “Our team and staff are doing a great job of supporting him and we are looking forward to getting him back soon.

“Out of privacy and respect for Rasheen and his family, we will not comment further on this topic until he is back with us.”