For the first time in 5 years the Gryphons will enter a season without Nick FitzGibbon at tailback. While the understudies didn’t have a lot of opportunities to prove themselves on the field, the coaches I’ve talked to were confident that they already had the talent on the roster to replace the heralded FitzGibbon. Guelph recruited three talented and athletic RBs but two will get looks as possible DBs.
I expect Todd Galloway’s new offense will be a continuation of what has been run here in recent years, but focusing even more on a sole back and with limited use of a true fullback. The ideal RB in the system would also be an excellent receiver. I would characterize it as a finesse running game rather than a power running game. That’s certainly what suits our personnel better.
Position Starter #2 Depth
RB Steve Lagace Rob Farquarson Davidson, Henderson, Rutledge
FB Tim Berta Campbell, Adamic freshmen
Steve Lagace (5’11” 200, Assumption/Burlington Stampeders) – entering 2nd season as a Gryphon. Previously played at Waterloo and Saginaw Valley State. Rushed for 3,400 yds in 2 senior seasons at Assumption. Was considered one of the top 5 prospects in Ontario (any position) in the 2006 recruiting class. Averaged 6.6 yds/carry in a back-up role in 2010. Catches the ball well. Was outstanding vs McMaster – the only extensive playing time he got. My choice as a player ready to have a break-out season. Lagace has waited a long time for the opportunity to be a #1 RB but has the talent to be a potential OUA Allstar.
Rob Farquarson (5’9″ 210, Stamford CI) – entering his 2nd season. Dressed as a freshman but saw limited action. Unheralded as a recruit, but coaches were raving about his abilities by the time training camp was done.
Cory Davidson (6′ 205, Lakeshore Catholic) – entering his 3rd season. Dressed as a freshman, played special teams but got limited snaps at RB. Did not play during his sophomore season. His hard work and dedication during this offseason again have him in contention for playing time.
Tim Berta (6′ 235, Dundas Highland) – entering his 4th season. Converted from LB last season to become the #1 fullback. Coaches were very pleased with his work at FB. Didn’t touch the ball a lot – 9 carries, 2 receptions – but was solid as a blocker. Sometimes lined up at TE.
Jordan Henderson (5’10” 210, Victoria BC) – entering his 2nd season. Did not dress as a freshman. Made some impressive runs in the Red & Black scrimmage.
Marc Rutledge (5’7″ 175, London AB Lucas) – entering his 2nd season. Did not dress as a freshman. Put up an impressive effort in the spring scrimmage.
New Recruits: Keaton Spratt, Chris Ullerick, Steven Gauntlet