Player Profile Series: RB Zach Line

With fall camp nearing, the PS staff will profile all 22 projected starters throughout July. Today we take a look at senior running back Zach Line.

Zach Line

Position: Running Back

Size: 6-1, 230

High School: Oxford (MI)

Classification: Senior

2011 Review: Hoss. That's just one way of many words that can be used to describe Zach Line and the season he had in 2011. Despite playing nearly the entire year with a dislocated shoulder, Line pounded opposing defenders with a full head of steam and cemented himself one of the greatest running backs in SMU history.

But Line's magnificent season was cut short as he missed the last three games with a foot injury and then soon after, underwent surgery. With Line out, SMU had to rely heavily on freshmen Jared Williams and Rishaad Wimbley. While the two youngsters did a nice job filling in, it was clear Line's production and leadership was truly missed.

Even though Line missed time down the stretch, he still led Conference USA and finished seventh in the nation with 122.4 yards per game. Line ended the year with 1,224 yards and 17 touchdowns en route to being named one of 10 Doak Walker award finalists.

Perhaps his most memorable performance came against Northwestern State, where he eclipsed Doak Walker's mark and set a new school-record for most touchdowns in a game with five.

2011 Grade: A-

2012 Outlook: The key to Line's success this season will be his health. If he's back at 100 percent, there is no reason to doubt that he'll be one of the best backs in the nation.

If not, that could spell trouble for SMU. However, Line has a tremendous work ethic and is just an overall tough kid. It would be extremely surprising if he doesn't come back better than ever, and that's why he's been named to the Maxwell Award watch list, which honors the best football player in the country.

The return of Wimbley and the addition of redshirt freshman K.C. Nlemchi to the active roster should help Line get a few breaks in here and there and will go along way when it comes to helping his durability.

Despite bringing in Garrett Gilbert to air it out, Line will remain an integral part of the offense. After all he can run over you, around you, through you and HE CAN PASS… well we haven't seen that quite yet but simply put, Line is a beast and barring something traumatic, there will be no stopping No. 48 in 2012.

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