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UTEP Football: Final Report Card, Running Backs

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The final position group in the final report card series is the UTEP backfield.

Michael C. Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

High points: Final two games, TK Powell, LaQuintus Dowell's heart, overall toughness

Low points: Aaron Jones injury

Final Grade: C

What they didn't provide production wise, the running backs showed heart, pride, and resolve through a rough season filled with injuries.

At one point, UTEP moved wide receiver Warren Redix over to the backfield just to have enough bodies for  formations, and a quarterback also saw carries at running back displaying the adversity this group went through injury wise.

Jeremiah Laufasa ended up leading UTEP in rushing with 378 yards with a 3.7 per carry average.  Kavika Johnson checked in second, while LaQuintus Dowell ran for 279 yards and two touchdowns.

One of the biggest stories out of the running back position came late in the season.

Walk-on running back TK Powell ran for over 100-yards against LA Tech who has one of the best run defenses in C-USA.  Powell's two game appearances led to 136 yards with a 6.8 yards per carry average, also averaging 8.8 yards on big play opportunities.

LA Dowell if you're reading this, you will forever be known as a warrior and a name no Miner fan will forget due to his heart and toughness for four seasons on special teams, and the fact that NMSU's Aggie Memorial Stadium should renamed LA Dowell Stadium.

Aaron Jones was poised for big things in 2015 after strong fall camp rushing for 209 yards in six quarters of football, and even earned honorable mention honors from the conference.  Expect a chip on the shoulder season in 2016 from #AJ29.

The heart and talent both Laufasa brothers' showed also needs to be recognized.  Darrin has developed into an uber effective, and fearless blocker who isn't scared to bang heads.  While Jeremiah played through knee issues, and single handedly ran over the FAU defense leading UTEP to a win.

Treyvon Hughes also battled injury throughout the season, and when fully healthy will become an asset in the back field, but only ran for 67 yards on 25 carries in his first season as a Miner.

With Aaron Jones returning in 2016, mixed with Hughes, Powell and possibly 2016 signee Peytton Pickett, the Miners appear to be okay for the immediate future at running back.

A lesson in adversity in 2015 could spark a 2016 resurgence in UTEP's run game.

Key losses: Jeremiah Laufasa, LaQuintus Dowell

Key Returners: Aaron Jones, Treyvon Hughes, TK Powell

2016 commits: Peytton Pickett

Individual Rushing Stats

Player Pos. Ht, Wt Year Rushes Yards TD Yards/
Carry
Hlt Yds/
Opp.
Opp.
Rate
Fumbles
(Lost)
Jeremiah Laufasa RB 6'0, 225 SR 101 378 1 3.7 2.2 34.7% 1 (0)
Kavika Johnson QB 6'1, 205 FR 68 252 1 3.7 3.0 33.8% 6 (4)
LaQuintus Dowell DB 5'10, 205 SR 63 279 2 4.4 3.8 39.7% 1 (1)
Darrin Laufasa FB 6'1, 250 JR 34 183 1 5.4 6.4 35.3% 1 (0)
Aaron Jones RB 5'10, 205 JR 32 209 1 6.5 9.2 40.6% 0 (0)
Ryan Metz QB 6'4, 205 FR 29 138 1 4.8 2.3 44.8% 0 (0)
Treyvon Hughes RB 6'1, 225 FR 25 67 0 2.7 5.9 20.0% 0 (0)
Warren Redix WR 5'10, 185 FR 23 136 0 5.9 4.4 47.8% 2 (1)
TK Powell RB 5'11, 190 FR 20 136 0 6.8 8.8 40.0% 0 (0)
NOTE: Quarterback run totals above do not include sacks (which are counted toward pass averages below) or kneeldowns.

Rushing
Offense Defense
Avg. Rk Avg. Rk Nat'l Avg.
Rushing S&P+ 78.6 126 99.8 69 100.0
Rushing Success Rate 37.9% 110 37.7% 30 42.3%
Rushing IsoPPP 1.00 96 1.34 126 1.08
Adj. Line Yards 84.1 122 103.9 49 100.0
Opportunity Rate 36.4% 96 33.4% 17 39.1%
Power Success Rate 75.7% 18 66.7% 73 66.4%
Stuff Rate 22.4% 103 20.7% 56 19.5%

Quarterbacks: C

Defensive Backs: D

Offensive line: B-

Special Teams: B

Linebackers : A

Wide Receivers/Tight Ends: C+

Defensive Line: C+

Overall Grade: C