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Why the 2020 Cycle Could Be an Important One for OSU’s RB Room

With Chuba Hubbard’s future in question, OSU needs to solidify RB depth.



[Instagram: daniyelngata]

Chuba Hubbard’s decision to stay or go from Oklahoma State will obviously be a big one for the program.

The Cowboys would obviously love to return Hubbard’s 1,936 rushing yards to pair with a year-wiser Spencer Sanders, but if Hubbard does decide to play professionally next year, there will be plenty of questions as to how OSU could possibly fill that Canada-sized hole. It’s a hole that the Pokes will have to try to fill partly with solid recruiting with the early signing period starting Wednesday.

OSU’s second-leading running back this season was LD Brown with 223 rushing yards and a pair of scores. Next on that list is Jahmyl Jeter, who has since announced a commitment to Texas State via the transfer portal.

Hubbard refuted a Twitter proclamation that surfaced Sunday stating Hubbard was returning for what would be his redshirt junior season. Hubbard instead said he is taking the decision day by day.

But if Hubbard were to leave with an already exiting Jeter, here would be the career rushing totals of OSU’s remaining running backs:

Name Attempts Yards Touchdowns
LD Brown 100 609 6
Micah Cooper 7 12 1
Deondrick Glass 2 8 0
Dezmon Jackson 0 0 0
Mbari Snoddy 0 0 0
Andre Washington 0 0 0

There isn’t too much there to get overly excited about, but with that said it looks worse than it probably is.

Brown hasn’t gotten a true shot at being RB1 in his tenure, sitting behind studs such as Justice Hill and Hubbard, but his 6.09 yards per carry is good.

Dezmon Jackson has been hobbled with injuries in his first season of DI football player after transferring from the junior college level. Jackson ran for 7.5 yards per carry and 1,216 yards in 2018 at Hutchinson Community College. He is also eligible for a redshirt after playing only one game this season.

Deondrick Glass’ bold goal of winning a Heisman in his freshman season didn’t come to be, but his redshirt season didn’t seem to be all bad. As early as Oct. 8 Mike Gundy said Glass “made a few plays” in OSU’s bye week practice. Gundy also named his highly touted freshman tailback a scout team player of the week on Oct. 18.

Those three have some promise, but a lot of it is unknown. So, that was all just a long intro for this:

Who Can OSU Add to That?

The four-headed monster of Hill, Hubbard, Brown and J.D. King from a few years back could be down to only Brown next season, and with unknowns beyond that, this could be an all-important cycle for running backs coach John Wozniak. Even if Hubbard returns, he is going to leave eventually, and when he does, OSU needs to strengthen the depth chart.

There are three prominent RB targets the Pokes are after with early signing period approaching in Daniyel Ngata, Isaiah Jacobs and La’damian Webb.

Daniyel Ngata: Ngata announced he will commit to a school at the Pro Football Hall of Fame World Bowl on Saturday. Ngata is the No. 2 all-purpose back in the 2020 class, according to 247. He’s the 80th-ranked prospect overall in the class, which would make him OSU’s top get of the cycle, ahead of fellow Californian Shane Illingworth.

At 5-foot-9, 180 pounds, Ngata is the smallest of the three backs, but what he might lack in size, he makes up for in overall athletic ability. He is listed as an all-purpose back for a reason, as Ngata is a solid pass-catcher. He sometimes gets lined up in the slot at Folsom High School.

It seems to be a three-horse race for Ngata’s commitment among OSU, Arizona State and Texas A&M, but Clemson and Utah could also still be in contention.

Isaiah Jacobs: Jacobs has an elite pedigree as Oakland Raiders’ star rookie Josh Jacobs little brother.

Jacobs missed much of his senior season with injury, but his ability is unquestioned. Jacobs is ranked 35th among running backs in the 2020 class, and, out of Owasso, he is ranked sixth among Oklahomans.

Jacobs is down to a final five of OSU, Ole Miss, Arkansas, Michigan and Maryland.

La’damian Webb: Webb was recently named a NJCAA All-American after a dominant freshman season at Jones County Junior College in Mississippi.

Webb had 940 rushing yards and 12 total touchdowns in his team’s nine games. He is the 60th-ranked junior college player in the country, and he took an official visit to OSU this past weekend.

Webb holds offers from OSU, West Virginia, Ole Miss and plenty of others.

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