RNE Back Looking For Ten Records
When football practice begins across the country next month, coaches will preach about pad level. They will try to get their players to play lower and play behind their pads.
In recent years we have seen shorter running backs be very successful. The list includes Barry Sanders, Warrick Dunn, Emmitt Smith, Thurman Thomas, etc. Perhaps the best college running back in the country this season is Darren Sproles (5-7) at Kansas State.
These runners can hide behind the massive offensive linemen and pop out from behind them. They also do not give the defender a lot to hit because of their lower pad level. Shorter backs tend to cut and accelerate well.
All of these attributes are strengths of Rod Fluellen of Columbia, SC. "I am 5-7 and 190," says Fluellen. "I run a 4.5, bench 315 and squat 515. This summer I have been working harder than ever because I have set some big goals for myself and want to be in the best condition of my life. We face a very difficult schedule this year with teams like Conway, Northwestern and Lexington so I need to be in good shape.
Last season Fluellen had a fantastic campaign. "I rushed for 2,233 yards and 29 touchdowns last season and broke five school records. Last year I broke the record for touchdowns in a game, touchdowns in a season and yards in a game (320). I want to break ten this year."
Fluellen added,"I am hearing from Vandy, N.C. State, Yale, Clemson, Georgia Tech and a couple of others. I am wide open. Most schools say they are waiting to hear back from my first SAT."
The Richland Northeast High School product says he is in no rush when it comes to recruiting. "I think I can have a big season then the others will offer. I am patient when it comes to recruiting."
The Tigers have a commitment from Tony Nelson at running back and will likely take one or two more backs in this class. We will keep an eye on Fluellen in 2004.
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