2014 Preview: Depth Marks Tailback Position
Aug. 7, 2014
FORT WORTH, Texas -- GoFrogs.com continues its preview of the 2014 TCU football team with a look at the running backs.
The Horned Frogs return their top two tailbacks from the close of last season in B.J. Catalon (5-9, 190, Jr.) and Aaron Green (5-11, 202, Jr.), while talented 2013 redshirts Kyle Hicks (5-10, 200, RFr.) and Trevorris Johnson (5-11, 221, RFr.) will look to put themselves in position for playing time. True freshman Shaun Nixon (5-10, 196, Fr.) is also in the mix.
Catalon led TCU in rushing for the second straight season with 569 yards in 2013, becoming the first Horned Frog since Joseph Turner (2007-09) to top TCU in rushing in consecutive years. Catalon closed the 2013 campaign with a career-high 93 yards on 11 carries against Baylor.
Catalon also made his mark on special teams, earning honorable-mention All-Big 12 honors as a kickoff returner. He finished second in the conference and 16th in the NCAA with a 26.5-yard average. Catalon was one of just four players nationally last season with a rushing touchdown and kickoff return for a score.
A Houston native, Catalon also shines in the classroom as a second-team Academic All-Big 12 honoree.
Green, a Parade All-American during his high school days in San Antonio, came on strong at the close of the season.
Green placed fourth on TCU with 232 yards. He was key in the 21-17 win at Iowa State with a season-long 22-yard gain on a 4th-and-1 to keep the Horned Frogs' game-winning drive alive. He then had a 17-yard carry to set the stage for Trevone Boykin's go-ahead 1-yard run with 38 seconds to play.
Hicks, a four-star recruit by Rivals.com and Scout.com, was ranked as the No. 3 running back in Texas and No. 21 in the nation. He ran for 1,113 yards while totaling 28 touchdowns in just nine games as a senior for Arlington Martin High School.
Johnson rushed for 2,115 yards and 19 touchdowns as a senior for Alief Taylor High School in Houston. He had a single-game high of 342 yards. Johnson was rated as the No. 7 running back in Texas.
Nixon has impressed early in camp. A four-star signee, Nixon was ranked by Scout.com last season as the No. 2 running back in Texas and No. 21 nationally.
BY THE NUMBERS:
1 - TCU tailbacks (B.J. Catalon) on the watch list for the Doak Walker Award, recognizing the nation's top running back
4 - Number of players nationally last season, including B.J. Catalon, to have both a rushing touchdown and a kickoff return for a touchdown334 - Yards rushing by Shaun Nixon in a playoff game last year for Lake Travis High School
406 - Rushing yards by TCU's LaDainian Tomlinson, a 2014 College Football Hall of Fame selection, against UTEP in 1999 to set an NCAA single-game record that still stands