white running backs

Discussion in 'College Football Stars' started by Jimmy Chitwood, Jun 19, 2006.

  1. Jimmy Chitwood

    Jimmy Chitwood Hall of Famer

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    okay, i thought it would be handy to keep track of the handful of white running backs around Division I on a single thread. so this is it. [​IMG] our favorites at Caste Football may be Brian Leonard of Rutgers and Peyton Hillis at Arkansas because of their incredible all-around talents, and tailback Kyle Bell at Colorado State because of his combination of punishment and speed, but there are a few other guys out there that we should keep track of.

    my first addition to the list is Idaho's Jayson Bird.

    [​IMG]

    here's what Fox Sports preview has to say about him...

    Best Offensive Player: Sophomore RB Jayson Bird is the dangerous player who'll give life to the nation's 117th ranked running game. He's a big back with tremendous speed and potential now that he's healthy after breaking his collarbone in the second game of last season.

    here's the link to his Idaho Bio page: link
    and one more pic! he's got some guns! [​IMG]

    [​IMG]Edited by: Jimmy Chitwood
     
  2. Gary

    Gary Mentor

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    I hope Jayson has a BIG season. He looks like a big strong guy!!Edited by: Gary
     
  3. Guest

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    He had a good yr as a freshmen but an unfortunate injury sidelined him last year...I look forward to watching him bounce back and having a great season.
     
  4. white tornado

    white tornado Mentor

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    from college football news here is Armys projected starting tail back.

    Ricky Lay, Sr.
    The 6-4, 215-pound senior has spent most of his time on special teams after starting out his career at quarterback. He move to receiver, and then to running back where he'll be a tall, speedy back with homerun hitting ability. What he doesn't have is a lick of experience with the ball in his hands and might end up moving back to receiver if some other prospects step up.
     
  5. Jimmy Chitwood

    Jimmy Chitwood Hall of Famer

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    Syracuse sophomore Paul Chiara was named as the starting tailback
    coming out of spring ball.

    he is 5'11", 187 pounds of playmaker, but of course, his job is already in
    jeopardy because of competition from other "specially talented
    sophomores" also on campus (read that as black running backs). already
    being labeled as too slow despite averaging the best yards per carry of
    the trio of sophs competing for the starting nod (16 carries, 94 yds, 4
    catches, 30 yds) from limited opportunities last year.

    additionally, Paul's numbers from high school were incredible: he
    recorded 3,765 rushing yards and 71 touchdowns and averaged 10.2
    yards per carry in his scholastic career!
    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  6. whiteCB

    whiteCB Master

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    Good job Jimmy keep up the great work.
     
  7. Jimmy Chitwood

    Jimmy Chitwood Hall of Famer

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    Vanderbilt University in the SEC has a young talented white tailback in the wings; in fact, redshirt freshman Jared Hawkins is listed as the top back-up going into the fall. here is his player bio: link

    his former high school coach used some forbidden words to describe the pale runner: "Jared has two characteristics that every good back needs - the speed to run away from people and the elusiveness to make people miss."

    here are a couple of pics: [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  8. whiteCB

    whiteCB Master

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    Vandy has a knack for producing some good white football players: Matt Stewart, Hunter Hillenmayer(personal fav/very underated), Andrew Pace, and of course Cutler to name a few.
     
  9. Jimmy Chitwood

    Jimmy Chitwood Hall of Famer

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    they also had a starting white running back a few years ago, Jared McGrath, who was named the team captain as a sophomore. wow! the bad part about Jared was his inconsistency. he would look like Craig James one game, and then the next time out would look awful.
     
  10. Jimmy Chitwood

    Jimmy Chitwood Hall of Famer

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    author's note: in the future of this thread, "fullback" should be translated to mean: a power running back who is white. thank you

    West Virginia starting "fullback" Owen Schmitt is a guy we've talked about a little bit, but he's usually overshadowed by fellow Big-East "fullback" Brian Leonard. Owen is a great story, having transferred to WVU from a Division III school. here's his player bio:link

    here's a great story on him and the WVU team: story

    excerpts: And while Schmitt may not be as well known to outsiders as Rutgers' Leonard, he has already established himself as the standard for toughness and durability in the WVU program.

    He came to West Virginia gift-wrapped as a sophomore walk-on from Division III Wisconsin River Falls, and cracked the regular lineup for good after an 80-yard performance in a road win against Maryland. Following the game, talented Washington Post columnist Mike Wise referred to the 6-foot-3-inch, 250-pound bruiser as a "runaway beer truck without its parking brake."

    Schmitt finished the season with 380 yards rushing and owns the distinction of having the longest carry from scrimmage (54 yards) of the running backs.

    Buying into Rodriguez's mantra of staying hungry, Schmitt has a whole laundry list of things he wants to improve upon this year. Specifically he's concentrating on his footwork, overall strength and speed, staying low, and catching the football out of the backfield.


    please note that he didn't talk about blocking at all. awesome!

    here are some pics: [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]Edited by: Jimmy Chitwood
     
  11. Jimmy Chitwood

    Jimmy Chitwood Hall of Famer

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    i just wanted to vent a little bit. here's another in the long line of examples of making a white tailback into a "fullback" without them ever getting a shot at the TB job.

    Luke Kravitz is a sophomore back-up fullback for the University of Washington. here's his bio: link
    coming out of high school, he was a 6'1, 200-pound tailback who ran a 4.5 40-yard dash, but he was recruited to be a fullback. WTF! now he is being bulked up to block, and the Huskies website boasts how he has put on 25 pounds since his freshman year... uh, do you think a runner with his credentials might have been better suited working on speed and agility drills instead of eating lots of pizza and milk shakes?

    now i've never seen him play, and the kid may not have been any good. but i find it very odd that a guy who finished his high school career with 4,300 yards and 77 touchdowns (and once scored 7 touchdowns in a game) was never even given the chance to play tailback! why could this be?

    [​IMG]Edited by: Jimmy Chitwood
     
  12. Bronk

    Bronk Mentor

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    At 6-4, 215-pounds Lay sounds like a formidable back. If he could add about 15 more pounds, he'd be a load.
     
  13. Jimmy Chitwood

    Jimmy Chitwood Hall of Famer

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    concerning Army's Ricky Lay, Fox sports says about the same things about him. he seems to be another of the versatile white athletes whose versatility and unselfishness has hampered his career. here's his player bio: link i find it odd that such a notable athletic specimen hasn't gotten virtually any playing time...
     
  14. Jimmy Chitwood

    Jimmy Chitwood Hall of Famer

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    the service academies, despite Air Force's Fischer DeBerry's attitude regarding whites, continue to play quite a few talented white athletes. Navy "fullback" Adam Ballard is an outstanding running back. as with all their players, Navy does a terrible job of providing info on their website, so a link would be worthless. Here's what Fox sports has to say about Adam:

    The 240-pound Ballard was an afterthought in the offense with Matt Hall getting all the work, and then Hall went down with a knee injury and Ballard exploded rushing for 167 yards against Temple, 192 against Army, and 129 against Colorado State finishing second on the team in rushing despite getting most of his work in the final three-and-a-half games. He's a battering ram of a blocker and a tough runner with the speed to break off the big play once he busts through the line.

    Adam finished the season with 190 carries, 668 yds, 6.1 ypc, 6 TD, 5 catches, 78 yds, 15.6 ypc.

    Adam: [​IMG]
    showing what would be called "breakaway speed" if he were black:
    [​IMG]

    celebrating: [​IMG]
     
  15. Jimmy Chitwood

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    here's another bruising tailback who is relegated to merely assuming the role of a blocking back at the collegiate level. UCF's Shane Smith, a 240-pound redshirt freshman, is only listed as a fullback despite tearing off 2,698 yards and 39 touchdown in just his senior year of high school! here's his player bio from last season: link

    the examples of discrimination against white running backs are all over the country! [​IMG]
     
  16. backrow

    backrow Hall of Famer

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    great thread guys! thanks a lot
     
  17. white lightning

    white lightning Hall of Famer Staff Member

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    A team to keep an eye on will be Wake Forest.They have two red shirt freshman running backs.Kevin Harris and Lucas Casperelli.Both of these kids run in the 4.4 range.Harris is an Alstott type who can just run over anyone at 235lbs of muscle.Lucas is more of a guy who can make you miss.I can't remember the last Div.IA School to have two white running backs on the same team in many years.Let's hope that both of these kids don't just end up sitting on the bench or get turned into fullbacks.
     
  18. SteveB

    SteveB Mentor

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    I don't see Caparelli being turned into a fullback. He is only 190 lbs and more of a scatback type. He can also play CB. That would be great if he can be a starting RB. Here is a thread I started about him a while back, Lucas Caparelli
     
  19. Jimmy Chitwood

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    Auburn's Tre Smith and UAB's Dan Burks are still around and still getting screwed over.

    Tre is listed as the fourth tailback coming out of spring practice despite averaging over 5 yards per carry every season that he's played in the SEC, so don't expect him to get much of a chance this year either. [​IMG] here's his bio: link

    and here's a pic from back when he still had opportunities to find the endzone:
    [​IMG]
    nice hops!

    Dan, on the other hand, keeps getting hurt or fumbling. when he isn't in the doghouse for that stuff, however, he is dominant. a tough, downhill runner with speed, let's hope Dan can finally put together an entire season. here's his player bio: link

    and a couple o' pics:
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  20. Jimmy Chitwood

    Jimmy Chitwood Hall of Famer

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    Duke's Justin Boyle is a solid running back who plays for a terrible team. despite having the second-longest run in Duke football history (83 yards) is still considered by most media idiots to be just a power back. despite running behind a terrible o-line and suffering numerous injuries, Justin still managed to lead the team in rushing, albeit not an impressive feat. he does have a nose for the endzone, however, scoring 9 touchdowns last year. here's his bio: link

    and a couple of action shots:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]Edited by: Jimmy Chitwood
     
  21. Jimmy Chitwood

    Jimmy Chitwood Hall of Famer

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    speaking of Tre, here's a video of him as a true freshman when he played in the Iron Bowl versus Alabama. youtube

    as far as i know, he was one of only two running backs who gained over 100 yards (he gained 126) versus the Crimson Tide defense that year. since then, though, his career has not been exactly great... [​IMG]

    by the way, i love youtube!
     
  22. white lightning

    white lightning Hall of Famer Staff Member

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    That video was great.It got me so pumped up.Thanks JC!
     
  23. Sandman

    Sandman Newbie

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    [​IMG]
    Joe Semanoff
    Running Back
    5-10, 215, Jr.
    #27

    [​IMG]
    "We have thing called the elite club," said Semanoff. "Where you bench 400-pounds, squat over 500 and clean 300-pounds. I just missed it because I benched 395. I squatted 520-pounds and cleaned 328-pounds. I feel really strong."

    SOPHOMORE - (2005): Saw action in nine games ... recipient of the team strength and conditioning award ... registered one rushing attempt for six yards ... credited with two receptions for 25 yards ... averaged 12.5 yards per reception ... had one TD against New Mexico ... had a 20-yard reception against New Mexico ... participated in spring drills ... rushed three times for 10 yards in the annual Blue-White game.

    FRESHMAN - (2004): Saw action in two games during the season, including the Cougars' 24-13 win over Wyoming and BYU's 49-16 victory over San Diego State ... a valuable contributor on the practice squad ... participated in spring drills.
     
  24. whiteCB

    whiteCB Master

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    Talent is a terrible thing to let just sit there and rot away and that's exactly what a-hole Tommy T. is doing to Tre Smith. Tubs could workout a 2 back system like when he had Ronnie Brown and Cadillac Williams but to have a white guy taking away carries from Irons is just a no no. What a joke of a coach Tubberville is. Why did he even give the kid a schlorship, when he knew he wasn't gonna play him.
     
  25. Jimmy Chitwood

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    hey Sandman, nice find. i have to admt that i've never heard of this kid before. but here's an interesting article on him from last year...

    Who Is This Number 27?
    By: Talo Steves
    TBS Managing Editor
    Date: Oct 12, 2005

    Practice observers have watched him run the football on the scout team, preparing BYU's first team defense for opposing offenses, but no one really knew much about number 27. That is, until the University of New Mexico game.

    Coming out of Lehighton, Pennsylvania, walk-on sophomore running back Joe Semanoff helped his team by running for six yards and catching two passes for 25 yards against the New Mexico Lobos. In the second quarter, Semanoff scored his first collegiate touchdown on a five yard swing pass from quarterback John Beck. The walk-on was an instrumental part in BYU's come from behind win when he nabbed a 20-yard pass reception to keep one of BYU's drives alive. So who is this guy?
    "Well, I'm almost 5'10", and I'm around 220 pounds and I run a 4.53 forty," chuckled Semanoff. "I'm from Lehighton right by Lehigh College. I played high school football there and I'm just a walk-on right now. In high school I was more of a straight ahead runner. You know, I got the ball 36 times in one game and that was all our offense was. It was just run, run, run. I like this [BYU] offense a lot more because it makes you a more rounded back, but also the backs are getting the ball about 50% of the time through passes and runs. I had two catches and one run for six yards, so I had my chances and I made the best of it."

    Following his come out of nowhere performance during the New Mexico game, many wanted to know more about this backup and scout team running back.

    "You know that's a common question," said Semanoff. "A bunch of guys on the team said, 'Hey my wife called and she was like who is that number 27?' I mean, I haven't really been on the field much and last year was my freshman year and I redshirted. Two years ago in 2001 when Luke Staley was here I went on a mission to Brazil, and I came back last year and the only playing time I got was during kickoffs."

    Semanoff's performance also caught the eye of quarterback John Beck who has seen how hard he has worked on and off the field.

    "He played great and that's what we need are players where if a player goes down you have another right there to step right in," said Beck. "You know, Joe Semanoff works his tail off in the weight room. When Joe Semanoff comes onto the field he works his tail off preparing and giving the defense a good look. He's a guy who's not the Fahu Tahi name or the Curtis Brown name, but he steps in and makes plays and I'm sure now the Cougar nation knows who Joe Semanoff is now and that's fun."

    From his hard work in the off-season and doing an outstanding job being the premier running back simulating opposing team ball carriers, Semanoff has finally been rewarded with playing time filling in for an absent Fahu Tahi.

    "I think it was all along spring ball and summer camp; I performed well and I think I've become more of a well-rounded back," said Semanoff. "I can pass block, run and catch out of the backfield. I was the scout team running back and I didn't go home over the summer and just stayed here and worked hard, and I really feel like I've earned some respect and got to know our offense.

    "With Coach Anae coming in this year I kind of got to start over with a clean slate to prove myself, so I just really worked hard with Fahu and Curtis to learn everything that a running back needs to do. I really look up to them and they'll tell me little things here and there like to try this or that, so they've been watching out for me and kind of helping me along".

    Prior to the New Mexico game, Semanoff got word from BYU coaches to prepare himself for what was to come.

    "Well, before the game I was a little bit nervous," smiled Semanoff. "You know how it always is when the coaches tell you you're going to be getting a little bit of time so I was a little bit nervous, but then I stepped onto the field and started warming up it kind of went away. I've been through every play a hundred times and knew exactly what I had to do and everything, so the nerves just went away and I just knew I had to execute."

    It did not take long before Semanoff was thrown right into the thick of the action. Semanoff talks us through what happened and was going through his mind during those plays.

    "When I got onto the field and both times before I received the ball from the pass I had to check my blitz pickup first, so I went through my progressions first, released and then the linebacker came out with me," Semanoff said. "Well at first I went down the side line and saw nobody there, so I looked up and caught the ball and was like, 'Oh man!' Then I took off."

    With 11:27 left in the second quarter, Semanoff again made his reads and caught a swing pass from quarterback John Beck that he turned into his first career touchdown.

    "For my touchdown run it was kind of the same thing," said Semanoff. "I thought my linebacker was going to come. So he stepped up and I stepped up and then released out of the backfield and when John threw the ball to me I saw I was one on one with the guy. I saw the power on the outside and thought that was my best chance so I went for it."

    "I think as players it's gratifying to see your fellow teammates succeed," said Beck. "I mean, to see Matt Allen get his first career touchdown in a situation like that is just great because I've known Matt forever and he's a hard worker and a play maker. To be able to run up on them and jump up and down and celebrate with my teammates who've worked so hard to get that opportunity and made the best of it is great."

    Semanoff's first career start as a running back started off with a bang; the excitement culminating when he received a warm reception from a proud coach and mentor for his performance back in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

    "Coach Reynolds came and we talked," smiled a humble Semanoff. "He told me he was proud of the way I played and that's all you can really ask for. To have your coach tell you he's proud of you is great. It's all you can really ask for."

    For now, Semanoff hopes he is able to continue helping the team develop and is happy to contribute in any way he possibly can. However, he does hope he is able to receive more playing time in the near future if BYU coaches call his number to possibly spelling Brown or Tahi if ever number 27 is needed on the field.

    "Yeah, I hope [I get to play more] but you know Fahu and Curtis are great backs," said Semanoff. "I really feel like I'm a role player and that's my role and I'm happy to do that. Those guys are great back and great guys, so if there is any way I can complement them or if they need a break and I can come in and relieve them, I have no problem doing that. There's nothing that makes me happier than trying to fight for playing time over these guys."


    it's interesting to see how physically impressive he is, yet once again he is another guy who had to walk-on. it's very frustrating. good luck to him and BYU this season!
     

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