Jahvid Best and Jacquizz Rodgers: Great Things Come in Small Packages
The Heisman. It's what every college football player dreams of. The best of the best receives this award every year. Such ones go on to do great things, take teams to the Super Bowls, and may even be enshrined in the Hall of Fame someday.
This year features a heated competition. Tim Tebow, Colt McCoy, Max Hall, Dez Bryant, Sam Bradford. All part of the mix.
Jahvid Best: Born To Run
What about California's running back Jahvid Best? Is he the best? The next Adrian Peterson or Reggie Bush? This is a young man who was born to run. Born to juke his way to touchdowns, championships...and maybe even a Heisman before his college career is over.
Jahivd went to high school in Vallejo, California. He shared an idol with many aspiring running backs—Reggie Bush. He recorded each and every USC game during Bush's career there. He studied film, went over plays, every ankle breaking cut.
"I'd watch Bush do something," Best recalls, "and then I'd try to do it the next week in my game. I've modeled my game after his."
Yes he truly did model his game after Bush. He absolutely could be considered the best running back in college football right now.
Some think because of his size, he may not do so good. But the truth of the matter is: He's the best. Figuratively, and literally. He's born to do what he does, and I could see him (as long as he stays healthy) winning the Heisman.
He will, in addition to staying healthy, need to have a huge season, get mondo rushing yards, and win key games against Oregon, USC, and Arizona State. Those are the only three teams that present a threat to Cal this year.
Best should lead his team to a Holiday Bowl, or maybe even a Rose Bowl depending on how USC does...that would be Cal's first since 1958. As if Best wasn't good enough, he bulked up 10 pounds this offseason.
He says he feels faster, and more explosive. Let that be a warning to all defenses out there.
He's the most electric back to watch since Reggie Bush. Maybe he should study up on his Heisman acceptance speech...
He ran for 1580 yards, averaging 8.1 a carry, and scored 15 rushing Touchdowns. He also ran for six Touchdowns of 60 yards or more last season.
Interestingly, Best was an all-star sprinter at Salesian High. He won the '07 State Championship 100 meter dash with a time of 10.31. He quit track for good though after a hip injury his Freshman year at Cal.
But boy we're sure glad he stuck with football. Jahvid is fun to watch, and leaves defenders in the dust with his amazing cuts, jumps, and flat out speed.
Watch out for this kid—he might just take home the Heisman.
Jacquizz Rodgers: Undersized and Underestimated
The simple fact is that Rodgers is way underestimated. The Beavers in general always are. He, in my opinion, should be in the top 6 for the Heisman. But what do I know...it the stats that'll do the talking.
His high school stats are simply amazing, which can be viewed here. He's only a Sophomore, and certainly shocked the nation on Sept 25, 2008. That's right, tremble in fear USC fans. You all know the day...
OSU vs. No. 1 USC. The game was incredible. I swear you could hear Corvallis from the moon.
Rodgers had a particularly incredible game. He ran 16 times for 100+ yards and 3 touchdowns. That's about every five rushes Rodgers scored a touchdown. Incredible.
He broke the Pac-10 Freshman rushing record when they dismantled UCLA November 5th. He finished with 1200+ yards, and 11 touchdowns. And again, incredible.
He was Pac-10 Offensive Player of the Year. He would possibly have been the Pac-10 MVP, and have more yardage had it not been for two things:
1. Jahvid Best. He was better, and just edged out Rodgers. Cal is also more widely supported than underestimated OSU.
2. Injuries. This had more to do with it, as he missed the Civil War and the Sun Bowl that year due to an injury. He possibly could've led the Beavers to beat the Ducks that year. He surely would've had at least a few more hundred yards and a couple touchdowns from the two games he missed.
Injuries shouldn't be a problem for the sophomore this year. And next year, Best won't be an issue either.
By his NFL rookie year, I see him winning one Heisman. This year the competition may be too fierce, but if they win against USC and the Civil War, then look out. Rodgers could shock the nation again.
He's small at 5'7" and 193 pounds. Heck, I have two inches on the guy at age 14. But he zips, cuts, and sprints like no other. He too is a truly electric back, and I would tune in to any Beaver game televised for a glimpse at this guy.
These two backs are the most electric in the Pac-10, if not the country. I look forward to watching them play throughout the college season. They both deserve a lot of recognition at what they do, which is truly remarkable.
It goes to show that great things come in small packages. No one can underestimate the Beavers led by Rodgers this year, especially USC. Watch out for these two, they could take the nation by storm.
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