Warm Up: RB Position Analysis

That's right. It's March. And March in Piscataway means spring football practice is right around the corner. To help get ready for Kyle Flood's first spring camp as Rutgers football head coach, ScarletReport.com is here to warm up the football talks by looking at a variety of different topics within the program. Today, we break down the running backs going into camp.

Rutgers remains without a 1,000-yard rusher since Ray Rice declared for the NFL Draft at the end of the 2007 season. Joe Martinek came extremely close, but the former Scarlet Knight will be spending his spring preparing for this year's draft.

The Scarlet Knights used three different starters at running back and rotated as many as five players throughout the season.

Like quarterback, expect the position battle at running back to get exciting when spring camp gets started.

First Teamers

Since no official position swap has been announced, we'll keep Jeremy Deering in the running backs slot alongside Jawan Jamison and Savon Huggins.

All three bring different talents to the position and each are proven offensive weapons. As a redshirt freshman, Jamison climbed from fourth on the depth chart to starter, finishing with 897 yards and nine touchdowns in nine starts. Jamison had multiple ineffective games, but also broke out for 200 yards against Cincinnati, then the top rush defense in the league.

As a true freshman, Huggins burst on the scene with two touchdowns in his first career game. He took over as the starter early in the season, leading to the departure of De'Antwan Williams, but struggled with red-zone fumbles and lost his spot to Jamison. A late injury kept the talented five-star prospect out of the New Era Pinstripe Bowl, but look for the former No. 1 recruit in New Jersey to hit the field hungrier than ever this spring.

Deering never broke out as a running back last season, but has plenty to offer the Scarlet Knights offense with his unique skill-set. As a junior, time is running out to find the best way to use Deering and this spring will be the best time for Kyle Flood and coordinator Dave Brock to figure it out.

Keep an Eye on

Coming off redshirt years, look for Paul James and Ben Martin to do everything they can to make a statement in the backfield this spring. A walk-on, James hails from Glassboro (N.J.) and brings a balanced skill-set of size, strength and speed that makes him a dark horse to have a breakout season. Martin once ran below a 4.4 40-yard dash at Rutgers camp and will use that speed on special teams and out of the backfield with a chance to prove himself to a new coaching staff.

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