2013 Watch List: The Running Backs
by Vince Pellegrini (@Vince_MYVS)
The following athletes are players whom you should become aware of entering the 2013 season.
Austin Arnal, SR/Mathews
2012: 1002 yards, 6.3 ypc, 8 TDs
…Arnal was a big factor in the Mustangs accumulating 275.5 yards rushing per game as a team in 2012.
Brandon Barnes, SR/Lisbon
2012: 1192 yards, 5.9 ypc, 15 TDs
…Barnes went from carrying the football just 3 times in 2011 to a back who was given 201 totes a year ago. He topped the team’s rushing total in 2011 (1081) alone last fall (1192).
Dewayne Burns, SR/Farrell
2012: 864 yards, 7.8 ypc, 8 TDs
…The 5’7 Burns enters his senior year by receiving interest from a couple Mid-American schools (Kent State & Akron) and an American Athletic Conference team in Temple. Dewayne has improved in his yards per carry totals from his freshman year (4.4) to his sophomore year (5.1) to his junior season (7.8).
Joey Clark, SR/Brookfield
2012: 349 rushing yards, 268 receiving yards, 12 offensive TDs
…Clark gained an average of 5.8 yards per carry (60-349) and caught 25 passes for 10.7 stripes per catch.
James Cupan, Sr/Girard
2012: 777 yards, 5.3 ypc, 11 TDs
…Cupan had big shoes to fill when he was called into action; however, James led the Indians in rushing yards (777) and touchdowns (6).
Mike Cyrus, SR/Champion
2012: 1050 yards, 5.6 ypc, 16 TDs
…Champion’s Cyrus was one of only seven rushers to gain over 1,000 yards in the All-American Conference. Mike also was productive from the receiving side as he gained 236 yards.
Ross Gould, SR/Poland
2012: 1100 yards, 6.3 ypc, 12 TDs
…Gould may not be the largest running back but he runs hard as was evident last year when Poland’s back pounded his way to 1,100 yards and 12 scores.
Darrin Hall, JR/Fitch
2012: 912 yards, 8.4 ypc, 14 TDs
…Hall led the Falcons in rushing (912), yards per carry (8.4), all-purpose yards (912), and touchdowns on the ground (14) in 2012.
Mike Millero, JR/Reynolds
2012: 1281 yards, 6.0 ypc, 16 TDs
…New head coach Josh Mull inherits one of the area’s best runners in Mike Millero. As a sophomore, he averaged over 128 yards per game as he carried the ball 214 times throughout the season.
Marcus Moxley, SR/Wellsville
2012: 923 yards, 7.3 ypc, 9 TDs
…Just like the year prior, Moxley was a load to bring down when he was carrying the football. In 2011, Marcus gained 7.6 yards per tote. Last fall, he posted almost identical averages (7.3).
Blake Reddick, SR/Lakeview (PA)
2012: 2091 yards, 7.4 ypc, 17 TDs
…After gaining over 1,300 yards in each of the past two seasons, Reddick has become a household name among fans from Western Pennsylvania. Blake will look to continue his success for the Sailors in 2013.
Foster Reznor, SR/Grove City
2012: 737 yards, 6.0 ypc, 11 TDs
…Reznor returns as the leading candidate for receiving the most carries once again with the graduation of Chad Williams and Harold Price. Reznor has rushed for over 430 yards in each of his three years with the Eagles.
L.J. Scott, JR/Hubbard
2012: 1614 yards, 9.6 ypc, 23 TDs
…Scott is being looked at by virtually every major college football team in the Midwest (and beyond). L.J. has gained 2,790 yards over his first two years with the Eagles. Scott has also caught 33 passes for 432 stripes. He’s scored 39 offensive touchdowns (36 rushing/2 receiving/1 passing)
Tyler Shaffer, SR/Jackson-Milton
2012: 876 yards, 7.0 ypc, 7 TDs
…Jackson-Milton may have finished 0-10 last fall but Shaffer leads a group which is hoping for success this season. Tyler followed up Brennen Morrison’s impressive 2011 (1007 yards) with one of his own (876 yards).
Turel Thompson, SR/Boardman
2012: 570 yards, 10.2 ypc, 19 TDs
…Thompson was named to the All-Federal League’s First-Team following his breakout season which saw the dynamic athlete accumulate 24 total touchdowns and 852 yards from the line of scrimmage.
Zack Van Giesen, SR/Leetonia
2012: 849 yards, 5.5 ypc, 10 TDs
…Zack has compiled 1,184 yards rushing over the past two seasons. Last year, he led the Bears with 849 stripes and 10 touchdowns.