Michigan's Molk to return to practice

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

Michigan could regain arguably the most valuable piece of its offensive line just in time to face No. 13 Penn State on Saturday (ABC, 3:30 p.m. ET).

Wolverines sophomore center David Molk has been medically cleared to practice after missing the last four games with a broken bone in his foot. Molk sustained the injury Sept. 19 against Eastern Michigan, underwent surgery a few days later and was expected to miss four to six weeks.

His performance in practice this week will determine whether he can play against Penn State.

"How he feels after each and every practice will determine, really, what role he can take, whether he can be starting, whether he can play the whole time, in and out, just what he can tolerate," Wolverines head coach Rich Rodriguez said. "Medically, everything has been cleared for him to go to practice. It is a matter of how comfortable he feels with that, getting back in action.

"He hasn't done much football-wise. He did a little last week, but nothing with full pads."

If Molk returns to the lineup, David Moosman would slide from center to right guard and the right tackle spot would go to either Mark Huyge or Perry Dorrestein. The left side of the line remains set with Mark Ortmann at tackle and Stephen Schilling at guard.

In other injury news, Wolverines running backs Brandon Minor (ankle) and Carlos Brown (concussion) will play against Penn State after missing last week's blowout of Delaware State.

  • Rodriguez on Monday told the story of when he played at West Virginia and the Mountaineers faced Penn State in 1984. Rodriguez's wife, Rita, then a cheerleader for West Virginia, went up to Penn State head coach Joe Paterno before the game and asked if he would take a picture with the cheer squad. Paterno agreed. "She kept that picture in her wallet," said Rich, who often jokes about the story with Paterno and Rita. "May still have it. Kept it right there in the wallet. 'There's the big celebrity, Joe Paterno and me, 1984.' ... She never asked to take a picture with me at the time."