Tulsa Skill Position StartersStarting wide receivers Thomas Roberson and Ricky Johnson work in tandem with a trio of backup wide receivers to augment the playmaking and return skills of burner Damaris Johnson and consistent career production of H-Back Charles Clay.
Three Golden Hurricane pass targets have scored at least 20 touchdowns in their college careers.
Quarterback #4 G.J. Kinne– Junior triggerman has started 19 games for coach Todd Graham's explosive offense. Mobile at 6'2" 215, Kinne has amassed 4,587 career passing yards and 37 TD. He's hit 60 percent of his throws this season (15 TD vs. 6 INT) as a pre-season member of the Davey O'Brien Award and Manning Award Watch Lists.
Last season, Kinne became the first player in school history to throw for 300 yards and run for 100 in the same game when he turned the trick vs. No. 13 Houston in a 46-45 defeat. Irish head coach Brian Kelly compared Kinne's style and on-field demeanor to that of Brett Favre while defensive coordinator Bob Diaco noted the QBs ability to throw deep on the run and buy time to find his targets downfield. Kinne led the 2009 Golden Hurricane in both passing (2,732 yards) and rushing (393 yards with 5 TD), the first Tulsa quarterback to lead in both categories since 1968.
H-Back #9 Charles Clay – Kicked off his 2010 campaign with a strong finish in 2009, catching 10 passes for 210 yards and 4 TD while rushing for four more scores against Houston and Southern Mississippi. Clay is tied for the team lead with 27 receptions and paces the Golden Hurricane with 330 receiving yards and six touchdowns this season, all through the air.
The 6'3" 235-pound senior has 14 TD in his last 11 games, 27 career TD receptions and 37 career touchdowns over his 47-game Tulsa career. With his next TD reception, Clay will pass NFL Hall of Famer Steve Largent and former Heisman runner-up Howard Twilley for first on the school's career TD receptions chart.
Clay enters Saturday's contest with 3,114 total rushing/receiving yards.
Wide Receiver #3 Damaris Johnson – One of the top skill position players in Golden Hurricane history, the diminutive Johnson has totaled 120 career plays (rushing, receiving, return) in excess of 20 yards in his 33-game career. Owns the school record for kick return yards and at 5'8" 170, led the nation in all-purpose yards last season.
Johnson has caught 158 passes for 2,197 yards in 26 starts and compiled 20 career TD (13 receiving, 5 rushing, 1 KR, and 1 PR). Tied with Clay for the team lead in receptions (27) and has averaged an astounding 10.8 yards per carry on 26 rushes this season en route to four rushing scores.
Tailback #23 Jamad Williams – Senior leader will play in his 47th collegiate game Saturday in South Bend. Williams has started 20 games at tailback but began the season at safety before earning four consecutive backfield starts heading into this week's contest. The 5'9" 205-pound Williams ranks just eighth on a deep Tulsa offense with 66 rushing yards but has 1,370 career yards on the ground with six touchdowns.
Wide Receiver #7 Thomas Roberson – True freshman target has started five contests, securing 16 receptions to rank fourth on the teams. At 6'3" 186, the lanky receiver earned starting nods after earning his second state title in 2009 at Tulsa Union high school. Roberson has three receptions in four separate contests this season as part of the balanced Golden Hurricane's attack.
Wide Receiver #5 Ricky Johnson – A member of the Conference USA All-Freshman team in 2009, Johnson has averaged nearly 16 yards per catch on his 12 receptions this season (6th on the squad). Scored two touchdowns on 20 grabs last season.
Key ReservesTrey Watts, Alex Singleton and Ja'terian Douglas contribute heavily to the team's four-tailback attack. Trae Johnson may be the most prolific "backup" receiver in the nation with 26 career touchdown receptions.
Wide Receiver #1 Trae Johnson – 5'11" 190-pound senior is a veteran of 46 career games and 22 starts. Johnson has 2,138 receiving yards with 26 touchdowns on 131 receptions. Led Tulsa with 8 TD receptions last season and has added two more through seven games this fall on 19 receptions. Third on the squad with 264 receiving yards.
Wide Receiver #6 Jameel Owens – Imposing target has three touchdowns on 11 receptions this season. The 6'3" 228-pound sophomore transferred mid-semester after sitting out his freshman season at Oklahoma.
H-Back #34 Willie Carter – Sophomore has played in 19 consecutive games and scored on a Tulsa season-best 75-yard TD reception in the season opener. Ranks ninth on the squad with 9 receptions for 156 yards while securing two scores. 6'2" 218-pounder ran for 165 yards last season (5.9 per carry) and has eight rushing attempts in 2010 totaling 49 yards.
Tailback #22 Trey Watts – 5'11" 201-pound redshirt-freshman has 287 yards from scrimmage on 50 carries and 16 receptions scoring once. Walk-on has started four games this season and ranks fifth on the squad in carries and rushing yards while tying for the team-lead with 16 receptions including a season-best of 28 yards.
Tailback #8 Alex Singleton – Bruising 6'1 249-pound sophomore leads Tulsa in rushing yardage (316), carries (57) and rushing scores (5). Averaging 5.4 yards per carry as the team's between-the-tackles rushing threat.
Tailback #25 Ja'terian Douglas – Shifty 5'11" 180-pound true freshman ranks third on the squad with 238 yards on 24 carries while scoring three touchdowns. Has appeared in each of the Golden Hurricane's seven contests, posting a career-high 64 rushing yards vs. Tulane while scoring on TD dashes of 18, 20 and 33 yards this season.
Wide Receiver #13 Genesis Cole – 6'1" 188-pound junior the eighth member of the squad to hit double digit receptions through seven games, totaling 10 for 114 yards in a backup role.
Tulsa Offensive LineJunior Brandon Thomas has started 14 games at right tackle but is listed behind Brian DeShane on Tulsa's initial depth chart.
Left Tackle #78 Tyler Holmes – 6'4" 304-pound junior has started 27 career games including 14 as a redshirt-freshman in 2008. Second team pre-season Conference USA selection in back-to-back seasons.
Left Guard #72 Clint Anderson – Another 27-game veteran, Anderson has 18 starts under his belt. 6'2" 285-pounder made his starting debut in the 2008 Conference USA Championship game, a 27-24 loss to Skip Holtz's East Carolina squad.
Center #53 Trent Dupy – Started each of the team's seven games this season and 17 over his two-year career. 6'2" 285-pounder earned 10 of those starts as a true freshman in 2009 as a member of the Conference's All-Freshman squad.
Right Guard #73 Stetson Burnett – The biggest member of the Golden Hurricane offensive front, the 6'4" 305-pound early enrollee sat out 2009 as a gray-shirt option. Has started seven games in this, his first season of action.
Right Tackle #73 Brian DeShane – 6'3" 301-pound sophomore has started at both tackle and guard this season, appearing in each of Tulsa's seven contests, staring twice.