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Friday, July 27, 2012

BYU Football: Did you know? (Running Back Tandems)

With the strong emphasis on throwing the ball by the Brigham Young Cougars, they are normally happy to have one good, reliable running back. However, there have been a few occasions when BYU has had two running backs, in the same season, do damage carrying the ball.
Did you know that BYU has had four seasons when two running backs have rushed for over 500 yards, and the combined rushing yards for these running backs was over 1,500?
These four seasons were 1986, 1992, 1994, 1996.

1986
Lakei Heimuli: 230 carries, 966 yards, 7 touchdowns
Robert Parker: 86 carries, 542 yards, 6 touchdowns
Totals: 316 carries, 1,508 yards, 13 TD

1992
Jamal Willis: 204 carries, 1,004 yards, 11 TD
Kalin Hall: 138 carries, 742 yards, 4 TD
Totals: 342 carries, 1,746 yards, 15 TD

1994
Jamal Willis: 204 carries, 1,042 yards, 12 TD
Hema Heimuli: 126 carries, 552 yards, 4 TD
Totals: 330 carries, 1,594 yards, 16 TD

1996
Brian McKenzie: 167 carries, 950 yards, 11 TD
Ronney Jenkins: 128 carries, 733 yards, 11 TD
Totals: 295 carries, 1,683 yards, 22 TD

Some tandems were more balanced than others.

1986
Carries were split 72.8% to 27.2%.
Yards were split 64.1% to 35.9%.
Touchdowns were split 53.8% to 46.2%.

1992
Carries: 59.6% to 40.4%
Yards: 57.5% to 42.5%
TD: 73.3% to 26.7%

1994
Carries: 61.8% to 38.2%
Yards: 65.4% to 34.6%
TD: 75% to 25%

1996
Carries: 56.6% to 43.4%
Yards: 56.4% to 43.6%
TD: 50% to 50%

The term “running back tandem” is ambiguous. I used the 500/1,500 standards because tandem implies that two people are sharing the load. The load isn’t being shared very well if one player accounts for 1,300 of the 1,500 yards.

Four other years BYU had tandems very close to the selected standards.

1998: Ronney Jenkins, 1,307 yards; Reno "Junior" Mahe, 481 yards.
2001: Luke Staley, 1,582; Brandon Doman, 456.
2006: Curtis Brown, 1,010; Fui Vakapuna, 445.
2010: J.J. Di Luigi, 917; Bryan Kariya, 537, or Joshua Quezada, 505.

The Editor appreciates all feedback. He can be reached via email at bluecougarfootball@gmail.com

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