SDSU's Penny accepts NIU player's apology for eye gouge

San Diego State running back Rashaad Penny says he received an apology Monday from the Northern Illinois player who gouged his right eye during the No. 19 Aztecs’ 34-28 victory Saturday night.

Penny said he spoke with both NIU linebacker Antonio Jones-Davis and coach Rod Carey. TV cameras picked up Jones-Davis sticking his fingers into Penny’s facemask while he was at the bottom of the pile after a kickoff return.

“He said he’s sorry and everything else,” said Penny, the nation’s second-leading rusher. “The head coach did as well. It looks like a bad play. It’s high emotions. They’re playing in a big game. They’re playing in a big atmosphere against us. When you come in and play against a high team like us, No. 19, you’re excited. Your emotions get the best of you. … It’s really no grudges I have against anybody. I get up and smile after everything. Honestly, I think it made us better.”

Carey suspended Davis-Jones for the Huskies’ game Saturday against Kent State.

“He was very sincere,” Penny said. “He was very straightforward. The head coach was, too. I accepted it because as I see things, you go through life, life is short so you’ve got to accept things while you have them now. There’s really no reason to hold grudges with anyone.”

He added: “You wish it never happened because you don’t want it to happen to any player in college football.”

SDSU coach Rocky Long said Northern Illinois “has handled it really well.” Long said…

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