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Colorado State receiver Charles Lovett won't return against UTEP

Last year's leading receiver still hasn't seen the field for the Rams this season.

Thomas Coffman and the rest of the Rams receiving corps will need to step up without Charles Lovett for at least one more game.
Thomas Coffman and the rest of the Rams receiving corps will need to step up without Charles Lovett for at least one more game.
Kevin C. Cox

Charles Lovett, Colorado State's leading receiver in 2012, has been ruled out of Saturday's game against the UTEP Miners (1:30 p.m. MDT, CBS Sports Network). Lovett had been expected to play as late at Monday evening.

The junior from Tampa hasn't played for the Rams since injuring himself in an Aug. 20 scrimmage, and his absence means that quarterback Garrett Grayson won't have one his best targets on the field for the fifth week in a row.

Lovett is expected to return in the Rams' conference opener against San Jose State Oct. 12, which might be a good way to break him in for the season; he had a huge game against the Spartans last year, catching five balls for 99 yards and a touchdown.

Lovett's absence should put even more of an emphasis on the run game for Colorado State, which managed only 51 yards on 26 carries against Alabama last week. That should change against a UTEP defense ranked No. 109 in the country and giving up 225 yards on the ground per game against New Mexico, New Mexico State and Texas-San Antonio. Expect Chris Nwoke, Kapri Bibbs and Donnell Alexander to get a lot of work against a Miners team that

Fellow receiver Jordon Vaden is also expected to miss his second-straight game Saturday, and starting linebacker Max Morgan is questionable following a shoulder injury sustained against Alabama.

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