As fall practice and the 2012 season approaches, GigEmNation will take a look at where the Aggies stand currently and in the future at each position group. Today, we glance at the running backs.
Michael enters his senior season after having the last two years cut short by injury. When he has been on the field, he has been productive (899 yards and eight touchdowns in nine games last year, 631 and four touchdowns in eight games in 2010). Malena, a junior, filled in capably late in the 2011 season while Michael and former Aggies running back Cyrus Gray were injured. Look for both to play significant roles in the offense this year. Williams, who transferred from Oklahoma, is awaiting a ruling on a waiver he applied for to be eligible for this season. If it's approved, he would be a significant addition to the Aggies' backfield this year, if not, look for another back to pick up what playing time would have been his. Regardless of the ruling, once Williams hits the field, he'll have three years of eligibility left.
Randolph was redshirting as a freshman until Cyrus Gray went down with an injury against Kansas, where Randolph saw his lone action of the season (10 carries, 37 yards). The sophomore had a solid showing in the Maroon and White spring game, carrying 13 times for 86 yards and two touchdowns. Williams, a true freshman, was an All-American at Spring, Texas/Dekaney and led the Wildcats to a state championship. Though small in stature (5-foot-8, 175) he's fast, agile and elusive and could see field time in some form this year, either in the backfield or on special teams. Carson transferred to Texas A&M from Oregon and will sit out this season per transfer rules. Once eligible, Carson will have three years of eligibility left.
Future: James White
Texas A&M has plenty of depth on its current roster at running back and that's reflected in recruiting, where White is the lone player in the 2013 class currently committed to play running back. The Pearland, Texas/Dawson back stands 5-foot-11, 195 and is a downhill-type back whose success will come mostly between the tackles. Once he arrives on campus, he should complement the younger backs well.