Stephen Morris expected to start at quarterback for Miami

Miami coach Al Golden expects quarterback Stephen Morris to start Saturday at USF even though he is not 100 percent.

Morris suffered what Miami has called a "bone bruise" in his right ankle in last week's rout of FCS foe Savannah State.

"If Stephen can go, he'll go. And right now, he's going," Golden told reporters after practice Wednesday night.

Starting center Shane McDermott seems likely to miss the game with a foot injury -- senior Jared Wheeler would make his second consecutive start if McDermott can't go -- but it shouldn't matter. USF has one of the worst offenses in the nation and shouldn't pose a problem for Miami.

USF's starting quarterback will be Penn State transfer Steven Branch; he has played in two games and is completing 33 percent of his passing attempts.

Morris (6-feet-2, 218 pounds) isn't playing that well himself. He is 30-of-56 on the season (53.6 percent) for 404 yards, with four TDs and two picks.

Junior Ryan Williams (6-5, 228) would start if Morris can't play. Williams started as a true freshman at Memphis in 2010 before transferring to Miami to be closer to his home in the Fort Lauderdale area. Williams sat out under NCAA transfer rules in 2011, then played sparingly last fall. He succeeded Geno Smith as the starting quarterback at Miramar (Fla.) High and led Miramar to the state title in 2009.

Mike Huguenin can be reached at mike.huguenin@nfl.com. You also can follow him on Twitter @MikeHuguenin.

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