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Memphis’ leading rusher leaves team, likely won’t return this season

Now that’s the way to (not) dig yourself out of a winless hole to start the season.

Memphis head coach Justin Fuente announced Tuesday that running back Jerrell Rhodes is no longer with the team and, barring “something drastic,” the first-year coach said he “can’t foresee him coming back this season.”

Rhodes did not practice with the team last week due to unspecified personal issues and did not travel with the Tigers for the game against Duke. Making the issue more head-scratching is that Rhodes is from Durham, NC, home of the Blue Devils.

Fuente, though, left the door open for a return next season for the junior.

“I have not kicked him off the team,” the coach said according to the Memphis Commercial Appeal. “He is going to go through some guidelines I have set. Football is the least of our concerns (regarding Rhodes) right now.

Despite missing a game, Rhodes is far and away the 0-4 Tigers’ leading rusher with 224 yards, including a career-high 106 in the season opener. He also leads U of M with two rushing touchdowns.