Pead Maturing On The Field

Isaiah Pead entered Friday night's game against Marshall with a few carries under his belt. With the Bearcats well ahead of the Herd, Brian Kelly wanted to test the former Columbus Eastmoor Academy running back and force fed him the football and showing him what college football was all about. We spoke with Isaiah about life as a college running back and his on-field experience last Friday.

"I was excited about all the carries. When you're the third string running back you've got to get your carries when you can. I was tired as it was shown on television, but when you're on the eight yard line and know you might have a chance to score you've got to stick it out and get the job done."

After waving towards the bench that he was winded, Pead soon learned he was no longer playing at the high school level.

"I learned I'm not getting out so I'm going to make sure I'm not going to get a negative play. I'm tired and like I said I don't get a lot of carries. So I learned I'm not coming out. I know my family, friends, former teammates and people who've supported me are watching so I had to suck it up because we were in a position on the field to score."

While Pead looked to get in the end zone he ended up fumbling the ball. Did Coach Kelly have any words of wisdom for him?

"Coach was upset and told me I need to hold onto the ball. He also told me they know I have talent and know I can play but I've got to hold onto the football. I told Coach Kelly I felt I was down and Coach Elston asked if we should challenge it. I told him yes but we were ahead and it was late in the game."

As for all freshmen they soon learn this game is not based just on talent. Much more is required at the college level for players to have success.

"It's no longer about who has the best physical talents. It's more about who knows more and who is going to do it right on the field. Everyone has skill here so you've got to have patience and control your feelings because coaches are going to tell you like it is and play who is getting the job done."

Having just completed two months as a college athlete, what has Isaiah learned about life as a college player?

"I've learned you've got to really get a handle on time management and listen to your coaches. You've got to have more dedication here than you did in high school. In high school you have longer on the field practices but here we're only on the field for about two hours. But we've got lots of meetings and the mental work needed at this level is so much higher."

One thing is for sure. Bearcat fans want to see more of Isaiah Pead just as Pead wants to get more time on the field. He feels he's starting to understand what it takes to get the job done.

"I've got to be ready for when my name called. I'm a third string back so I've got to be ready when the coaches call on me to do what they've coached me to do. I know I'm maturing as a person and a college running back. As I continue to learn this offense and work on the areas I'm the weakest at like picking up the blitz and making sure I line up where I'm supposed to be I'm confident I'll see more time on the field."

One thing is for sure. Brian Kelly and Tim Hinton have done a great job of teach Isaiah Pead early there is more to the game of football than just running. He's got great physical talent that fits into Coach Kelly's offense to have success and the future is bright. Don't be surprised if Isaiah Pead starts hearing his name more as the team heads into Big East play.

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