By LARRY VAUGHT
Freshman running backs A.J. Rose and Benny Snell made a good impression on offensive coordinator Eddie Gran Saturday.
He said he liked the way all the running backs ran “physically downhill” during the practice.
“I thought the one thing we did well was that. We showed some toughness, we showed some breaking some tackles, making some plays. So looking forward to watching the film and seeing just how many yards after contact we actually did have,” Gran said.
“From where I was we missed a couple holes, missed some things, but I’m excited about where we’re at. We’ve got depth. That is really good at that position. If you have depth at that position, you have a chance.”
Junior Boom Williams, who had an elbow injury last season, is still being held out of contact work, which means other backs like Rose and Snell are getting extra reps. Another running back, Mikel Horton, twisted an ankle Saturday and that could give the freshmen more practice reps.
So how does Gran, who also coaches running backs, plan to develop a running back rotation in games?
“Like today was their first test. With their first test we’ll grade them by assignments. If they don’t know what to do and when to do it then they’ll be on the sideline with me and the other guys will get more reps,” Gran said.
“I’ve been fortunate at times when I’ve played two running backs or I’ve played three – they all three knew what to do. We weren’t losing much in there. So that’s what we’ve got to find out in the next three weeks.”