Jordan Nettles, the leading returning rusher for the NIU football team, opted out of the 2020 season, a spokesperson confirmed on Friday.
Nettles ran for 274 yards on 67 carries last year. With Tre Harbison, Marcus Childers and Marcus Jones no longer with the team, he was by a wide margin the most experienced ball carrier coming back this season.
With Nettles sitting out, Rondarius Gregory is the leading rusher back from last year. The redshirt freshman ran nine times or 43 yards last year while keeping his redshirt status.
The backfield also features junior Erin Collins, who ran for 618 yards on 134 carries for Hutchinson Community College last year, scoring 11 times. He redshirted for North Carolina State as a true freshman in 2017.
More information will be available at the school's virtual media day, scheduled for 1 p.m. Tuesday.