Northwestern beats Cal, but struggles with injuries
Quarterback Kain Colter—last year's catalyst for what was an explosive offensive unit—went down after the second play of the game with concussion-like symptoms and his playing status is unknown for a Week 2 matchup with Syracuse.
Backup Trevor Siemian performed admirably in his place, finishing 18-of-29 for 276 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions, but there's no doubt that the 'Cats missed Colter's big-play ability throughout the game.
Northwestern was also without its best offensive playmaker in all-purpose running back Venric Mark, who was sidelined for much of the game with a lower-body injury and is considered day-to-day. Mark compiled 2,166 total yards and 15 touchdowns in 2012.
Last but not least, Pat Fitzgerald will be without one of his starting cornerbacks for the remainder of the season. According to an ESPN report, junior Daniel Jones left the game toward the end of the first half with a knee injury and will require surgery.
The Wildcats should be a heavy favorite over Syracuse with or without these impact players, but it would favorable to Fitzgerald to have Colter and Mark back in action to find a rhythm in the early-goings before conference play starts.
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