The Cardinals added a group of bruising running backs in the 2016 recruiting class

The Cardinals added a group of bruising running backs in the 2016 recruiting class

Louisville was looking to add a few punishing running backs in their 2016 recruiting class and on National Signing Day were pleased with what their additions.

"We added what we needed," said Cardinals running back coach Kolby Smith.

A pair of incoming freshmen, Dae Williams (6'2, 236) and Malik Staples (6'1, 205), and an X-factor in junior college athlete Malik Williams (6'3, 220) provides the size and athleticism that the staff desired.

Rated among the nation's Top 100 backs by, Suwanee (Ga.) Peachtree Ridge product Malik Staples provides size, with an impressive burst of speed. 

"He's a bruiser," said Smith. "He makes one cut and he gets down hill real fast. He has great acceleration and burst."

Williams, the Sapulpa, Okla., Offensive Player of the Year, impressed the Cardinals staff, including offensive coordinator Garrick McGee, when participating in one of the program's camps during the spring.

"We are really impressed with his work ethic," said McGee. "The way he is going to go out and compete everyday, and move his big body."

The pair provide size, but differing styles when coming out of the backfield.

"Dae's a little bigger, and Malik (Staples) may be a little bit more explosive, so you need those two types of players back there," said McGee.

Williams, a product of Allen Hancock College, has been a wide receiver for much of his career before moving into the backfield during the early stages of his sophomore season. 

"He can do a lot of things," said McGee. "He's shown that he can play safety, play receiver and he's played running back. He's a good sized kid."

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