BYU to play freshman QB if Nelson's back still bad

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PROVO, Utah (AP) -- After raving about the past success of BYU senior quarterbacks, the Cougars very well could start a freshman against a Norm Chow-coached Hawaii team Friday.

Senior Riley Nelson acknowledges the pain of an unspecified back injury has been problematic both mentally and physically in stinging back-to-back losses to Utah and No. 24 Boise State.

BYU coaches say they likely will decide by Wednesday whether to go with Nelson or freshman Taysom Hill against Hawaii (1-2) but won't announce their starter until game time.

In a 7-6 loss to Boise State, the Cougars (2-2) were held to 61 yards passing -- their lowest total since a 3-0 loss to Utah in 2003. Hill replaced the mistake-prone Nelson and engineered a 95-yard TD drive but saw his two-point conversion pass tipped away.