Spring Position Battle - A - Back

33jacket

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Days has had and still does have a fumble problem. IIRC he fumbled vs ole miss just recently.

If this isnt improved your starters are hill and andrews.
 

alaguy

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Odd situation with 5 Srs and one Jr.
Days is probably the biggest/ best but the fact is he not a great runner and he is still learning to be a RB..(ie-blows in pass assignments)
I hope Andrews wins the job as he will be THE man in '15.
Perkins can run but block? Hill is decent overall but is he healthy?
Bostic and Zenon are poster guys for the idea that avg 175 lb guys are going be right at this level, in this offense, when blocking 230 lb LBs is normal.I think at least one will bow-out by Fall.
Maybe no star but if we had this type of depth and exp at other positions like at Aback ,I wouldn't worry about reaching 7 wins.
 

Boomergump

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Thanks for the write up. I was going to do my last looking ahead for the AB group, but I guess it is better to tack on here. First off, I want to wish Roobie Godhigh well. I want nothing but the best for that young man. Perseverance is such a great quality.

I think Synjin is poised for a good year. He is a great blocker, first and foremost, but he is also a pretty versatile player. He can do some things in the receiving game even though he was a bit of an untapped resource in 2013. Oddly enough, running out in space, in the east-west direction, isn't really in his wheelhouse. He can make some good cuts and jumps in traffic when he needs to, but his default mode seems to be going airborne prematurely. It is a bad habit because it can render you defenseless to all kinds of ball jarring hits. He would be better served keeping his body low and his feet on the ground using his appreciable size to pound for yards with the ball better protected. I like him better between the tackles, but I wonder if the ball security issues he had were incompatible with the QB MESH etc. I really like him when he gets his shoulders turned square up field. He just needs to get himself in that position more often. I am pretty sure he will be in the rotation.

Perkins was the beneficiary of more open grass last year than anybody. This made him look like a champ. Charles is a decent player, but I think he will find himself with about the same level of impact next year, despite RG's departure. I like having him back because he is a great person with a lot of heart and character and because he will not be a big step down from the top three.

Deon Hill is the Tevin Washington of ABs. The sum of his parts is pretty effective overall, but he won't really light it up in any one phase or "wow" you in any way. I think he will find himself in the top 3 because of his consistency and reliability. He is a worker and underrated because of the lack of flash. I am glad his health issues have been figured out. Hopefully, with that impediment removed we can look forward to a productive season.

Andrews, to me, has the look of a breakout kind of player. He has the potential to be electric and the attitude to be a motivated blocker. I think he is a good instinctive runner with enough speed and wiggle to really hurt you. I like him as a receiver, runner, and blocker. He won't be the most physical guy we have at the position, but he will be the most explosive. He will benefit the most from another year in the system. He makes top 3 in my book.

I have no idea about Zenon or Bostic. Two years ago Bostic ran like his hair was on fire. Last year he couldn't figure out the correct side of blockers to run on. I don't get it. I have always liked him more than Zenon, in every phase, but 2014 was just a downer for him. I want to think he will get his head back on straight, but I just don't know. Competition is getting better. He needs to get better.
 

vamosjackets

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After re-watching our bowl game, I'm a little higher on Synjyn than I was. He made some pretty good runs in that game and didn't seem to give away available yardage as I thought he did at other times. He pretty much made the most of his runs for the most part except for one where he did do the "Air-Synjyn" thing, when he probably could've gotten more had he made a cut around the obstacle and fought for a few more yards once contact ensued. I don't think he's going to be our best runner because he hasn't got great speed that would come in handy to outflank the defense to the corner. But, hopefully, he'll get some extra yards after contact due to strength and determination and will consistently run to the space that's there to maximize the yardage available to us. And, he can be a nice target in the passing game. And, of course he'll be an asset as a blocker. Very likely that he ends up one of our starters. I'd still like to see Dennis Andrews with the ball in his hands the most though. Synjyn, Dennis, and Deon will be a pretty good top 3. It'll be interesting to see who else earns some PT.
 

Whiskey_Clear

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I disagree with so many upperclassman I would be very surprised if any A back played this year.
Agree. Autry might get a few carries but I expect he will be used primarily on special teams. Even that's not a certainty though. Golden will be our main return man this year.
 
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Techster

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Synjyn to me is a bigger and more athletic version of Lucas Cox in terms of being the "big blocking AB". He's OK in the passing game, as long as the ball is placed in the square of his face to his hips...anything over the shoulder is probably going to be dropped. Synjyn's problem is he lacks short space quickness that ABs need...he's a bulldozer. Seems like he lost a step when he bulked up in the transition from AB to QB. Great athlete that should have probably developed on defense rather than offense...especially considering our lack of a good safeties the past few seasons.

Bostic is a slot receiver in the wrong offense. That's what gives me pause about Myles Autry. If you isolate just the passing plays he's involved in, he's a stud. The guy knows how to find the open space, and when the ball gets to him he catches it (look at the VT and FSU tape in 2012). Unfortunately, our QBs have had a problem finding him in pass plays (Vad Lee in the ACC Champ game vs FSU is a great example). Lacks the bulk to break arm tackles on runs, but has a little short space quickness to be slippery when he has the time to set up the defender. Unfortunately, that's not always the case. One of the very few AJC Super 11 guys CPJ has been able to sign, but hasn't worked out at GT.

Andrews looked like the best AB last spring. He reminds me a lot of a more quicker Roddy Jones. Not quite the blocker that Roddy was, but better with the ball in his hands than Roddy. Surprisingly, I thought he moved to AB too soon. Looked great as an early enrollee a few springs ago at QB, but that was when Vad and JT seemed like the QB1 and QB2. Would probably be our #2 this year had he stayed at QB.

Zenon looked like a great AB his first two seasons, but tailed off last year. Has big play potential (remember 1st play from scrimmage against MTSU in 2011?), but something happened. Not a big guy, but seemed like he just fit the AB spot. I guess the rumbling is that he's not doing what the staff expects from their players.

Deon Hill to me is an enigma. The guy can run, he can block, and he can catch. He really should be Orwin Smith redux, but I read recently he has medical issues. Hopefully he can bounce back because all the physical tools are there.

Perkins has shown signs of being able to take advantage of open space, and explosiveness we saw in his HS tape. His highlights have been few and far between, but probably shown more last year than he did his entire career previously. We now all know he's had medical issues, so it's good to see him finally get rewarded after coming in as one of the most hyped BB recruits of the CPJ era. I expect him to have a huge Senior year.

It' s interesting that in an interview CPJ referred to our offense has having 4 WRs at all times, but philosophically, they're utilized as RBs. From a skillset and physical standpoint, there's more variety at AB than any other position. This is probably the most questionable the AB position has been since CPJ first arrived.
 

stylee

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I think Hill has a starting spot locked in if he's healthy. He is like Orwin in a lot of ways, maybe a step slower but with better hands.

Days will be the odds-on favorite for the other spot. Good blocker, but he just doesn't seem to have much open-field instinct; it's like he's more comfortable when there's a bunch of guys around him.

I think Bostic, Andrews, or Perkins could take it from Days. Perkins looks to have the straight-ahead burst, though without much wiggle after all the injuries. He's improved as a blocker too. Andrews is the most complete runner and gives good effort when blocking. Bostic's speed and receiving prowess is well-known, as is his inconsistent blocking.

I'll say:

Hill and Perkins as the 1s
Days and Andrews as the 2s
 

dressedcheeseside

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I think Hill has a starting spot locked in if he's healthy. He is like Orwin in a lot of ways, maybe a step slower but with better hands.

Days will be the odds-on favorite for the other spot. Good blocker, but he just doesn't seem to have much open-field instinct; it's like he's more comfortable when there's a bunch of guys around him.

I think Bostic, Andrews, or Perkins could take it from Days. Perkins looks to have the straight-ahead burst, though without much wiggle after all the injuries. He's improved as a blocker too. Andrews is the most complete runner and gives good effort when blocking. Bostic's speed and receiving prowess is well-known, as is his inconsistent blocking.

I'll say:

Hill and Perkins as the 1s
Days and Andrews as the 2s
Bostic is a terrible runner. He runs into his blockers.

I think we'll see a step down in Aback production this year. We lose our best blocker, pass catcher and runner at the position with the loss of Godhigh.
 

alaguy

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Bostic is a terrible runner. He runs into his blockers.

I think we'll see a step down in Aback production this year. We lose our best blocker, pass catcher and runner at the position with the loss of Godhigh.
yep,
it will be terribly ironic that out of SIX exp'd candidates we can't find 2 that operate at high enough level for success (7-5+)
 

Rodney Kent

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I want a runner who is a stud runner. If he cannot block well, I will somewhat give him a pass if he continues to give me the running results I desire as a coach. I would expect him to try and block a defender, but he would not have to sacrifice his body to do so. I would not care if he was a standup blocker as long as he got in the way of the defender. A good back only needs a brush block at times to get past a defender, we do not have to try and destroy the defender. In fact, the defender often eludes the blocker who tries to knock him off his feet.
 
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Tech loses the biggest play maker on offense in Robbie Godhigh and he will be hard to replace...Both A back spots will be open for competition/

Competitors - Synjyn Days, BJ Bostic, Tony Zenon, Deon Hill, Charles Perkins, Broderick Snoddy and Dennis Andrews.

Favorites - Synjyn Days. the other is wide open.

I would consider Synjyn a big favorite to win of the starting jobs due him likely being the best blocker we have at A-back now. Days really came on this season in that area. He doesn't have a lot of touches running the ball as he only had 27 carries last season. I would expect him to see more carries this season.

BJ Bostic seen his carries cut from 34 in the 2012 season to 16 in 2013...Bostic really struggled this season and did not show much when he was on the field. He struggled to find running lanes and seemed to always run into his blockers...As far as blocking I didn't see much in that area. Bostic has speed but he has not shown on the field yet. I am hoping that Bostic can have a breakout season this year...He is someone that I think can do some things in the slot.

Like Bostic, Tony Zenon seen his carries cut in half over the last two years. We have not got to see a lot of Zenon on the field and form what I have heard he has been in CPJ's doghouse for awhile now. I would be very surprised to see Zenon get significant minutes this season.

The young A back that I like the most is Dennis Andrews. Andrews was a RS Freshman last year and did not see many carries but he looked good when he was in the game. He seems to be a natural running the ball and finding lanes. I like what he brings to the team...He is someone who I expect to see a much bigger role this season.

The fastest guy on the team is Broderick Snoddy but he just can't seem to find his fit in our system. He started out his career at A-back but was then switched to B-back. Now on NSD, CPJ hinted that Snoddy could be heading back to A back in the Spring. The big knock on Snoddy was his ability or lack thereof to block from the A back spot...Snoddy also needs to learn to be more of a north-south runner. When he gets going he can fly but he is not a guy who is laterally quick enough to be a east-west runner.

Seems like just yesterday that Charles Perkins was entering the program..now he is a Senior. Perkins has been another guy who has bounced around from position to position but he seemed to find a home at A back last year. He actually showed some promise when he was on the field this past season.

Deon Hill was named a starter heading into the 2013 season but had a unfortunate medical issue...He was hospitalized after the Elon game and diagnosed with Crohn's disease. This caused him to miss several games last season...however he seems good to go and is looking forward to ending his career on a high note. Hill is a player that the coaches like a lot and think is a good player. I think Hill has a breakout season this year.

Prediction - Synjyn Days, Deon Hill

* I am not listing the three Freshman that are coming in at A Back in CJ Leggett, Clinton Lynch and Myles Autry.

Good post. Thank you. Why is Zenon in the doghouse, I thought it was Bostic . None of them block like they need to. Also, the success of the A-backs in our program is directly proportional to the performance of the quarterback. The drop off in A-back performance from 2012 to 2013 was directly attributable to Vad's poor play. The dive or midline read has to be correct in order to set up the toss or keep decision on the edge. When the dive fails, the edge will often be covered. Teams that can ignore the dive will have numbers up on the perimeter. Without a viable passing alternative the A-back play is going to be stuffed most of the time. Vad's hesitant play on the option made A-backs sitting ducks. Hopefully, improved qb play this year will give several A-backs more opportunities to shine. I think the starting backfield for the Wofford game will be Thomas, Laskey, Days and Perkins. After the first three games, anybody's guess. Glad you didn't list the freshmen---sure hope our older guys play well enough that those youngsters can be redshirted for the future.
 

LongforDodd

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Tech loses the biggest play maker on offense in Robbie Godhigh and he will be hard to replace...Both A back spots will be open for competition/

Competitors - Synjyn Days, BJ Bostic, Tony Zenon, Deon Hill, Charles Perkins, Broderick Snoddy and Dennis Andrews.

Favorites - Synjyn Days. the other is wide open.

I would consider Synjyn a big favorite to win of the starting jobs due him likely being the best blocker we have at A-back now. Days really came on this season in that area. He doesn't have a lot of touches running the ball as he only had 27 carries last season. I would expect him to see more carries this season.

BJ Bostic seen his carries cut from 34 in the 2012 season to 16 in 2013...Bostic really struggled this season and did not show much when he was on the field. He struggled to find running lanes and seemed to always run into his blockers...As far as blocking I didn't see much in that area. Bostic has speed but he has not shown on the field yet. I am hoping that Bostic can have a breakout season this year...He is someone that I think can do some things in the slot.

Like Bostic, Tony Zenon seen his carries cut in half over the last two years. We have not got to see a lot of Zenon on the field and form what I have heard he has been in CPJ's doghouse for awhile now. I would be very surprised to see Zenon get significant minutes this season.

The young A back that I like the most is Dennis Andrews. Andrews was a RS Freshman last year and did not see many carries but he looked good when he was in the game. He seems to be a natural running the ball and finding lanes. I like what he brings to the team...He is someone who I expect to see a much bigger role this season.

The fastest guy on the team is Broderick Snoddy but he just can't seem to find his fit in our system. He started out his career at A-back but was then switched to B-back. Now on NSD, CPJ hinted that Snoddy could be heading back to A back in the Spring. The big knock on Snoddy was his ability or lack thereof to block from the A back spot...Snoddy also needs to learn to be more of a north-south runner. When he gets going he can fly but he is not a guy who is laterally quick enough to be a east-west runner.

Seems like just yesterday that Charles Perkins was entering the program..now he is a Senior. Perkins has been another guy who has bounced around from position to position but he seemed to find a home at A back last year. He actually showed some promise when he was on the field this past season.

Deon Hill was named a starter heading into the 2013 season but had a unfortunate medical issue...He was hospitalized after the Elon game and diagnosed with Crohn's disease. This caused him to miss several games last season...however he seems good to go and is looking forward to ending his career on a high note. Hill is a player that the coaches like a lot and think is a good player. I think Hill has a breakout season this year.

Prediction - Synjyn Days, Deon Hill

* I am not listing the three Freshman that are coming in at A Back in CJ Leggett, Clinton Lynch and Myles Autry.

I, too, hope Hill recovers from his ailment and regains the starting spot he lost. He is the better runner among Zenon and Bostic. Andrews is my No. 3 RB.
 

franklinjacket

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Just about every year we've had to replace our most productive AB. We will miss Godhigh, but I believe someone will step up. I think Days will have a very solid year with maybe 3-400 yards rushing and be our best blocker on the edge, but I fully expect either Hill or Andrews to step up and be the man. Andrews is one of our most natural runners and I think he has a chance to have a big year. I don't know how he is catching the ball, but I'm sure he is at least adequate. Hill looks like a very steady player, I just don't know where he stands health wise. I would love to see Perkins do well, but with his shoulder I don't think he will ever be given a huge workload.

There are definitely questions heading into spring, but I'm optimistic about this group. JT's quickness should prevent teams from stringing plays out toward the sideline which should give the ABs more room to make plays.
 

AE 87

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Just about every year we've had to replace our most productive AB. We will miss Godhigh, but I believe someone will step up. I think Days will have a very solid year with maybe 3-400 yards rushing and be our best blocker on the edge, but I fully expect either Hill or Andrews to step up and be the man. Andrews is one of our most natural runners and I think he has a chance to have a big year. I don't know how he is catching the ball, but I'm sure he is at least adequate. Hill looks like a very steady player, I just don't know where he stands health wise. I would love to see Perkins do well, but with his shoulder I don't think he will ever be given a huge workload.

There are definitely questions heading into spring, but I'm optimistic about this group. JT's quickness should prevent teams from stringing plays out toward the sideline which should give the ABs more room to make plays.

You're really going out on a limb, suggesting Days will get between 3 yds and 400 yds. (y)

Seriously, though, I agree with your post, but I won't be surprised that if Bostic decides to stay and focus, he'll be the guy this year.
 

Boomergump

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Bostic is a terrible runner. He runs into his blockers.

I think we'll see a step down in Aback production this year. We lose our best blocker, pass catcher and runner at the position with the loss of Godhigh.
To say Bostic is a terrible runner might be a bit much. I will agree he had a terrible year in 2013. However, before that, I have seen him make several good runs.
 
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