Tulane running backs look to make strong impact in 2019
Green Wave rushed for over 2,800 yards in 2018
NEW ORLEANS – In 2015, the Tulane football team was ranked 119th in the nation in rushing offense.
In 2016, under the direction of then first-year head coach Willie Fritz, the Green Wave moved up more than 90 spots to sit at 26th in the country.
Since then, Tulane’s offensive power has continued to surge, with the team checking in at 20th in 2017 and 23rd in 2018 among FBS teams. In addition, Tulane’s team rushing totals in 2017 (2,778) and 2018 (2,836) rank third and second all-time in program history, respectively.
So what’s next in 2019?
With a squad of six returning running backs and a new leader in offensive coordinator Will Hall, it’s safe to say the Green Wave are just getting started.
“The thing I love most about them is they’re really unselfish, they really build off of each other and they pump each other’s tires,” Hall said. “They build an unselfish aura around our offense and I need to find a way to get them all on the field together and do a lot with them and I think we’ll be able to do that.”
The group, which Fritz has referred to as the “strength of this team,” features returners Darius Bradwell, Corey Dauphine, Stephon Huderson, Amare Jones, Cameron Carroll and Ygenio Booker, alongside newcomer Tyjae Spears.
Though running the ball will be a key focus, it’s not all that these running backs will focus on this season, as they are also expected to play a greater role in the passing game.
“I’m a team player and I want to win, so whatever they ask me to do, I’m going to do it,” Bradwell said.
Throughout fall camp, Hall has been pleased with the skill and versatility among the running back group as well as their desire to learn and improve.
“What I tell them all the time is, ‘hey guys the more I can do with you, then the more I can do with you, so really get in your playbook and learn,’” Hall said. “And they’ve embraced that and I’m excited about this group.”
The Green Wave took part in their first scrimmage of fall camp Friday morning at Yulman Stadium before wrapping up a busy week Saturday afternoon at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
Tulane’s visit to dome on Saturday marked the second-straight day the team made a trip downtown to its former home venue, as the entire squad took in the Saints’ first preseason game against the Minnesota Vikings.
Following practice on Saturday, former Green Wave defensive back Devon Walker spoke to the team about his experience as a player and what Tulane means to him.
Tulane returns to the practice field on Monday morning at Yulman Stadium.
Tulane opens the 2019 season on Thursday, August 29 at home against FIU with kickoff scheduled for 7 p.m. The Green Wave are coming off a memorable 2018 campaign that was highlighted by a win in the AutoNation Cure Bowl and an American Athletic Conference West Division Co-Championship.
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