Beaver Football 2019 Preview: Running back

 

Jermar Jefferson had an impressive Freshman season for Oregon State. His breakout performance for the Beaver offense was tremendous. Now, can he keep it up as a Sophomore. You know that defensive coordinators throughout the Pac-12 have been studying his every more. Well the thing about Jefferson is that he isn't alone, He has a tremendous group of Running back teammates to give Oregon State versatility carrying the ball.

First let us give Jermar his due....this is an impressive list of accomplishments for any Freshman:

• Played in all 12 games, making nine starts

• Named a Freshman All-American by The Athletic, ESPN, USA Today, the FWAA and 247Sports

• All-Pac-12 Honorable Mention

• Set the Oregon State true freshman rushing record with 1,380 yards. Averaged 5.8 yards per rush on 239 carries

• Rushed for 254 yards at Arizona State, the second-best single-game total in OSU history

• Also rushed for 238 yards against Southern Utah, the fourth-best mark at OSU

• His 1,380 rushing yards ranks sixth in a season at OSU. The 1,380 yards led all freshmen nationally and was ninth overall regardless of class

• Tallied seven 100-yard games

• Scored 12 touchdowns, with four apiece versus Southern Utah and Washington State. First player in OSU history with two four-score games in the same season

• Tallied 41 carries of 10 or more yards, ranking second in the Pac-12 and seventh nationally. Finished with 15 rushes of 20 or more yards, most in the Pac-12 and tied for fifth nationally

• Added 25 receptions for 147 yards

• Scored twice and rushed for 106 yards at Nevada

• Carried the ball 25 times against Washington State, garnering 138 yards and scored four times

• Rushed for 135 yards on 30 carries against Colorado in the overtime victory. Set a season-best with 49 receiving yards against the Buffaloes, making six catches

• Gained 109 yards on 19 carries at Stanford, followed by 115 yards on 19 attempts at Washington

• Named to the Touchdown Club of Columbus 2019 Players to Watch List after the 2018 season

Senior Artavis Pierce had some pretty impressive moments in 2018. None more mind-blowing than the 3rd Quarter in Columbus against Ohio State:

 

Pierce got off to a great start in 2018 until an elbow injury forced him to miss three games. The 80 and 78 yard touchdown runs against Ohio State were electrifying. He now is the Senior leader in this deep group of Running backs:

• Played in nine games, making three starts

• Carried the ball 54 times for 408 yards, averaging 7.6 yards per rush. Tallied 15 catches for 149 yards. Scored four rushing touchdowns

• Opened the season with 168 yards and two touchdowns on 11 carries at Ohio State. Finished with separate runs of 80 and 78 yards, respectively

• Rushed for 91 yards on 11 carries in the home opener versus Southern Utah. Scored one touchdown

• Ran the ball three times at Stanford, finishing with 46 yards

• Pac-12 All-Academic Honorable Mention

Pierce is the only Senior in a group that are all Freshman or Sophs.

B.J. Baylor had a great spring and the Sophomore from Wharton, Texas showed us flashes of brilliance in 2018. 27 yards on two carries against the Cougs.

Calvin Tyler Jr, Kase Rogers also will get good looks in camp. Ta'Ron Madison is a newcomer from Banning, California 6'1 212 pounds. Running backs Coach Michael Pitre breaks down his game:

 

So the Running back depth seems solid. The group could be part of a potentially potent Oregon State offense.

NEXT UP: Special teams

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