Utah Utes quarterback Tyler Huntley (1) wears a sling before the game against the Oregon Ducks at Rice-Eccles Stadium in Salt Lake City on Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018.

SALT LAKE CITY — If cleared to play, Utah quarterback Tyler Huntley said he’ll start for the Utes in the Holiday Bowl against Northwestern on Dec. 31.

“If I’m cleared I will play,” Huntley noted. “. . . I will start.”

The junior, who suffered a shoulder injury in a 38-20 loss at Arizona State on Nov. 3 that required surgery the following Monday, said he’s preparing to play and is feeling healthy.

“It’s coming pretty good,” Huntley noted. “I’m just taking it a day at a time.”

Huntley said he should know if he’ll be cleared to play in a couple of days. Utah coach Kyle Whittingham told reporters that word will hopefully come soon.

“But nothing yet,” he said.

In the meantime, Huntley is doing what he can in practice.

“I feel like if they do clear me, I’ll be already ready,” he said.

Huntley added that it won’t matter how close to the game that clearance for contact comes.

Backup Jason Shelley stepped in for Huntley and quarterbacked the Utes to wins over Oregon, Colorado and BYU. That was followed by the Pac-12 title game appearance against Washington.

HOLIDAY HEALTH: Whittingham said that the Utes are healing up in preparing for the Holiday Bowl. It’s been two weeks since their 10-3 loss to Washington in the Pac-12 championship game.

“The relative health of the team is good,” noted Whittingham, who added that staying in shape won’t be a problem because they’re always doing something.

ABOUT CHASE: All-America linebacker Chase Hansen is “a little beat up” according to Whittingham. The coach said “we hope so” when asked if Hansen is on target to play against Northwestern.

“It remains to be seen,” Whittingham explained.

However, Whittingham said that no players, to his knowledge, plan to miss the bowl game for NFL Draft reasons.

“Nobody has approached me about that and so as of now the answer would be no,” he continued.

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RECRUITING UPDATE: As the early signing period approaches, Whittingham said the Utes are “on track.” They don’t have a lot of scholarships available with only 11 seniors and returned missionaries coming back.

“There’s not going to be as many signees as usual,” he said. “But we feel really good about what we’ve got going.”

The majority of the class of 16-18 newcomers, Whittingham added, will be involved in the early signing period that begins Wednesday.

Although Whittingham didn’t comment on Jayden Daniels announcing plans to sign with Arizona State instead of Utah, he did confirm that Utah is planning to recruit a quarterback this year.