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EWU's Jones to miss semifinal with broken foot

| December 13, 2010 8:00 PM

CHENEY - Eastern Washington All-America running back Taiwan Jones has a fractured bone in his foot and is not expected to play when Eastern (11-2) hosts Villanova (9-4) on Friday (5 p.m., ESPN2) in the semifinals of the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision playoffs.

Jones, who ranks second in FCS in both rushing yards (145.2 per game) and all-purpose yards (201.8), suffered a fracture to the base of his fifth metatarsal bone in his left foot in EWU's 38-31 overtime victory over North Dakota State on Saturday in the quarterfinals. He finished with a career-high 230 yards rushing in that game, including 203 yards and a touchdown in the first half.

Eastern head athletic trainer Brian Norton said Jones will have a consultation with an orthopedic surgeon today to determine if surgery is needed. Norton said there is a slight possibility that Jones could return for the national championship game on Jan. 7 in Frisco, Texas, if Eastern advances.

"I'm disappointed most for Taiwan," EWU coach Beau Baldwin said. "He's worked so hard, and without Taiwan Jones we wouldn't be in this position. We feel that way about a lot of players on our team, and Taiwan is a part of that. It's always disappointing when one of your players is not able to go, especially one so instrumental in our success this season."

Jones, a junior from Antioch, Calif., has 1,742 rushing yards and 17 total touchdowns for the season.

Baldwin said one of Jones' backups - true freshman Mario Brown or junior Darriell Beaumonte will start at running back this week. Brown has 214 yards and a touchdown this season and Beaumonte has 216 yards and a pair of scores.

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