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No date set in trial of ex-No. Colorado backup punter

GREELEY, Colo. -- Investigators are still running tests on
evidence gathered in the case of a former Northern Colorado backup
punter accused of stabbing the starter, attorneys said Tuesday.

A judge had planned to set a trial date for Mitch Cozad, charged
with attempted first-degree murder and second-degree assault, but
held off so the Colorado Bureau of Investigation could finish its
tests.

"There's still some more work to be done," said Joseph
Gavaldon, Cozad's attorney. "We need to get together with the
district attorney to see if this is a case that has to be tried.
I'm hopeful to resolve any case. A case not tried is a case not
lost."

Asked if a plea agreement was in the works, prosecutor Michele
Meyer said: "I have not spoken to Mr. Gavaldon."

Cozad, of Wheatland, Wyo., is accused of stabbing Rafael Mendoza
in his kicking leg on Sept. 11. Mendoza suffered a 3- to 5-inch
deep knife wound when he was attacked in a dimly lit parking lot at
his apartment complex.

Police have said they believe Cozad stabbed Mendoza in an
attempt to get the starting job. The case drew quick comparisons to
the assault by Olympic figure skater Tonya Harding's hit man on
rival Nancy Kerrigan.

Cozad is free on $500,000 bail. If convicted, he could face up
to 48 years in prison. He has been kicked off the football team and
suspended from the university.

Mendoza returned to the team two weeks after the stabbing and
averaged 39.9 yards on 56 punts.