2002 Recruiting: Running Backs

Arizona's stable of running backs is one of the deepest they have had in years. Not since the Ontiwaun Carter, Chuck Levy, Billy Johnson days have the Wildcats seen so much potential in the running back corps. Despite a host of talented athletes on the roster, the Wildcats have just one player with a collegiate carry on the team. The potential may be there, but that doesn't mean the Cats aren't going to bring in at least a couple of runners.

The running back position is not a huge priority like the lines and defensive back, but with so much unproven talent that Cats are going after some very well regarded runners.

The Wildcats aren't afraid to go after one of the best and that is why Reggie Bush is at the top of their wish list. Bush is rated as the third best runner in the nation and has all the top schools as suitors. He comes from Helix High School in La Mesa, California, a school that has produced a number of Wildcats including Chuck Cecil and Brandon Sanders. Even this tie may not be enough to sway the two time All-State selection. Right now Bush favors Stanford, Notre Dame and Washington.

Kenneth Frank is a talented two-way player who has the Wildcats high on his list. The 6-2, 190-pounder may also play linebacker or defensive back. The Cats are in the mix, along with LSU and a few Pac-10 schools. In addition to rushing for 1,285 yards last season, he also had 96 tackles and six picks. He has good hands and would make a nice target out of the backfield in the Wildcats' offense.

George Hill of Corona (Calif.) High School is a smaller, speedy back. At 6-0, but under 170 pounds, Hill has been timed in the 4.5-4.6 range. He was an All-league selection as sophomore with 1,500 yards, but managed just 1,100 yards in an injury plagued season. He's a versatile player who could also be a receiver or defensive back at the college level. Arizona is in the mix along with a lot of Pac-10 schools and Penn State.

The Cats are looking to Nevada for Cornell Johnson. The Desert Pines runner has good size (6-1, 210) and great numbers (1,700 yards both as a sophomore and junior). Johnson is used to playing in a pass-oriented offense and has thrived scoring over 30 touchdowns.

The Cats have done well in Texas and are looking there again this year.

Brenton Bolden of Clear Creek High School in League City, Texas is garnering some interest. Missouri, Colorado and LSU are in the mix with the Cats. Oklahoma and Oklahoma State are also entering the picture. He had decent numbers as a junior, running for 1,000 yards and 8 tds.

Marcus Cross, a Houston product, has come out of nowhere and is now catching the eye of a lot of schools. He has offers from the Cats, LSU, Arkansas and Colorado. He has blazing 4.4 speed and a solid build.

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E-mail Brad Allis at Heymtymte@cs.com

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