Hart's mom uncertain of RB's status for Saturday's game

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- Mike Hart's mother is as in the loop as
anybody can be when it comes to the status of Michigan's star
running back.

Like coach Lloyd Carr, though, she isn't sure if Hart will be
healthy enough to play for the 24th-ranked Wolverines against

"No one will know until Saturday," Rory Rushlow said in a
telephone interview Wednesday. "I just left Ann Arbor yesterday,
and he says he's fine and if he's even 80 percent healthy he'll

"Hopefully, he'll play. But he if doesn't, I'm sure he'll play
the next game against Minnesota."

Hart hurt his right ankle Saturday against Purdue, and did not
play in the second half.

His teammates said they expect him to play.

"There's no doubt in my mind he'll play," offensive tackle
Jake Long said earlier this week.

Carr has been noncommittal.

"The injury that he has, it's always a lot to do with how a
player feels," Carr said Tuesday. "Ultimately, you have to watch
him as a coach and as a trainer and make determinations from

Hart seemed to be relatively healthy in the second half against
Purdue as he smiled and laughed with teammates while watching the
game, walking on the sidelines without an obvious limp.

He is listed as the No. 1 tailback on Michigan's depth chart,
heading into Saturday night's game at Illinois.

Brandon Minor, Hart's backup, limped off the field against
Purdue after he appeared to hurt his left ankle. Minor was later
carted off the field and left the stadium with a protective boot
covering his left foot.

Third-string running back Carlos Brown scored twice in the
fourth quarter of the 48-21 win over the Boilermakers.

In only a half, Hart scored twice and had 21 carries for 102
yards -- setting a school record with his seventh straight 100-yard

The senior also moved past Wisconsin's Anthony Davis for fifth
among the Big Ten's career rushing leaders with 4,757.