Commentary: Utah running backs a key influence on Dennis Erickson and Brian Johnson
The freshmen: Dre’Vian Young, Troy McCormick and Marcus Williams »9 of 9 «
While questions remain as to whether the trio will actually play — will they all redshirt, perhaps? — there’s little question as to who is the fastest.
Young was the Texas 5A 400 meter champion, and his 46.80 time was the fourth-best in the nation by a prep athlete in 2013. Perhaps his raw speed will give him an edge over McCormick and Williams to start fall camp.
Then again, Williams beat nearly 1,300 other recruits in April 2012 by recording the highest score at the Nike Football SPARQ Combine in Long Beach, Calif., where he had the top 40-yard dash time (4.43 seconds).
Williams, an All-Northwest League co-offensive MVP for Durango High School (Las Vegas), also beat those same 1,300 recruits with the top vertical jump (39.4 inches). He needed it given that he had played just three games during his junior season after transferring to Durango from Bishop Gorman, according to the Las Vegas Sun.
Young was a three-star recruit out of Nimitz High School (Houston) and a Houston Chronicle Top 100 Texas recruit who was named first-team all-district as a senior and second-team as a junior.
McCormick was also a three-star recruit from the Houston area, which helped less than one might expect. He only got an offer from Duke University — the only FBS school beside Utah to offer him a scholarship — before the Utes came calling. McCormick told 247sports.com he was surprised Utah safeties coach and recruiter Morgan Scalley offered him a scholarship.
McCormick was a 19-5A all-district co-offensive MVP and first-team running back last season and a second-team honoree in 2011.
Williams doesn’t just join Poole as a Las Vegas native on the Utes’ roster. Offensive linemen Jeremiah Poutasi and Jeremiah Tofaeono are also from Sin City. This group joins an impressive list of Utes from Las Vegas-area schools: linebacker Stevenson Sylvester (Valley High), who helped the Utes go undefeated in 2008 and is currently with the Pittsburgh Steelers; Eddie Wide (Cimarron-Memorial High), who finished his career with more than 2,000 rushing yards and 23 touchdowns; and wide receiver DeVonte Christopher (Canyon Springs), who signed as a free agent with the Washington Redskins following this year’s NFL draft.
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