MINNEAPOLIS -- Minnesota running back Gary Russell won't return to the team this year.
That leaves the Gophers without both of their 1,000-yard rushers from last season, since Laurence Maroney left a year early for the NFL. Russell, who would've been a junior, is not enrolled in classes for the fall semester, school spokesman Shane Sandersfeld confirmed Wednesday.
That means Russell is ineligible for this season, and the chance of him playing college football again anywhere is slim. Academic failure forced Russell to drop out of the university last spring, and he attended a local community college to try to better his grades.
Maroney and Russell each surpassed 1,000 yards rushing last year, making Minnesota the first school in NCAA history to have two 1,000-yard rushers in three consecutive seasons. Russell ran for 1,130 yards on 186 carries with 19 touchdowns as a sophomore.
The Gophers are scheduled to begin practice on Aug. 4.