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No Jamal Merrell for Rutgers against SMU

Malik Stokes, Jamal Merrell AP

For the third consecutive game, Rutgers will be without one of its most productive players on the defensive side of the ball.

With the game at SMU still four days away, and despite coming off a bye weekend, Jamal Merrell has already been ruled out of the AAC matchup.  The linebacker has been dealing with a lingering kidney issue, which has forced him to miss wins over Eastern Michigan and Arkansas the past three weeks.

Suffice to say, there’s no definitive word yet on whether or not the senior will be available for the 3-1 Scarlet Knights’ huge showdown with nationally-ranked Louisville.

Merrell has started 28 of the last 29 games in which he’s played, finishing the 2012 season third in tackles (83) and fourth in tackles for loss (8.5).

Quentin Gause started in place of Merrell in the Knights’ Sept. 21 win over the Razorbacks and is expected to do the same against the Mustangs.

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