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Gophers Start Freshman Nelson At QB

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MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Minnesota freshman quarterback Philip Nelson has made his college debut at Wisconsin.

Nelson started the season as the third-stringer, but starter MarQueis Gray has been bothered by a sprained left ankle for the last month and backup Max Shortell hurt his neck in last week’s loss to Northwestern. So coach Jerry Kill decided to burn Nelson’s redshirt season and start him against the rival Badgers on Saturday.

Gray was at wide receiver instead.

Nelson was the Associated Press Player of the Year for Minnesota high school football in 2011 after a standout career at Mankato West. Nelson actually grew up in the Madison area before his family moved to Minnesota, and his father, Pat, played for the Badgers in the late 1970s.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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