Posted by ESPN.com's Graham Watson
East Carolina coach Skip Holtz said via phone Thursday that running backs Jonathan Williams and Norman Whitley could be back with the team when fall camp opens on Aug. 6.
Williams and Whitley, two of the team's top rushers, were both suspended for unspecified violations of team rules. Neither player participated in spring football. Holtz said he'd know Friday whether both players earned the necessary summer school grade point average to satisfy the requirements he put on their return.
"I've put some stipulations on their GPAs," Holtz said. "Their summer GPAs and what they do, community service hours, etc., I have a handful of things that they have to adhere to. Right now, they're doing everything they're supposed to do and I anticipate them being back with us with what they're doing right now."
Williams was the team's leading rusher before he was suspended in October. Whitley went on to lead the team in rushing, but was suspended at the end of the season. Their return will help bolster a running back corps that's already laden with talent. Senior Dominique Lindsay, who was expected to be the starter last season before he suffered a knee injury during fall camp, is back healthy. The Pirates also have Kentucky transfer Brandon Jackson and senior J.R. Rogers.
"Jackson had a great spring for us and really kind of came out of the spring as one of the starters," Holtz said. "And then you have J.R. Rogers who's going to be a senior who's really kind of maturing and growing up with this being his last year. I think he's doing some great things. So, I think we have a chance to be pretty talented and pretty deep at the running back position."