Terry Caulley, Jordan Todman, Andre Dixon and Donald Brown.
UConn fans know good running backs. They've known elite running backs and elite run games. UConn enters camp in 2015 with the goal of getting back to that. It will be a long road, but there is talent in the locker room.
Ron Johnson, 5-11, 220-pounds, led the Huskies in rushing last year as a true freshman with 429 yards and three touchdowns. He became the starting RB at the midway point and as a big back is a favorite to handle the workload getting 20 plus carries a game.
The offense will be run based, and the Huskies are going to need to find touches for Arkeel Newsome, who at 5-7, 160-pounds is a small but game-breaking talent. Johnson is faster than you would think at his size, and Newsome, though small, has thick legs and can handle running between the tackles. It's a good 1-2 punch that was pushed into action too early last year.
The Huskies envision Johnson doing the dirty work running the ball and Newsome (188 yards rushing) out in space as a running back, in the screen game and also potentially in the slot. The key to Newsome is getting him touches in space (room to make others miss). That comes down to timing, offensive line blocking and also scheme design. He's an unusual talent who can run and be a threat in the passing game as well as handing the ball off.
Greenville, NC, USA; Connecticut Huskies running back Ron Johnson (3) runs with ball during the 3rd quarter against the East Carolina Pirates at Dowdy-Ficklen Stadium. The East Carolina Pirates defeated the Connecticut Huskies 31-21. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports
Backups remains close in ability. Josh Marriner (110 yards rushing), a sophomore, has explosive running ability and is a versatile running back out of the backfield. Senior Max DeLorenzo (343 rushing, 4.5 YPC) is a special teams star and whenever he's been given the ball has produced.
The Huskies didn't bring in a RB this recruiting class and the staff is confident in what they have at the position.
Fullback? With the move of Matt Walsh to linebacker the Huskies are left with Jazzmar Clax at the position. Clax can also run the ball, but has had only scant few carries in his career. There aren't many options after Clax at fullback, with William Weyrauch the only other FB on the spring roster. But, the position can be schemed away with tight end usage.
The Huskies have to get back to the power run game of the Randy Edsall era. Offensive coordinator Frank Verducci will also serve as running backs coach and offensive line coach Mike Cummings will devise a plan to get it going. UConn has proven it can churn out great backs. Terry Caulley, Cornell Brockington, Donald Brown, Andre Dixon, Jordan Todman and Lyle McCombs all had 1,000 yard seasons while both Todman and Brown were All-Americans after their respective seasons.
The Huskies haven't had a 1000 yard rusher since the last three years and the staff would like to change that in 2015.