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Zips football: Running back by committee

By George Thomas Published: September 24, 2012

Running back Quentin Hines kinda, sorta complicated things at that position with his rather conspicuous outburst Saturday night.

His 75-yard dash showed the dash of explosiveness that coach Terry Bowden has been looking for since the beginning of preseason camp.

Even with the team heading into conference play, he’s committed to giving at least three backs – Jawon Chisholm, Conor Hundley and Hines, significant snaps.  Another, freshman Hakeem Lawrence, is nursing a shoulder injury.

“Chisholm is running hard; he gets good hard rushing yards. I think you see Conor being a good short yardage, inside runner who can block,”  Bowden said, “and Quentin Hines showed us why we want to get him some reps because he has that knack for breaking a long run and their team couldn't catch him.  He had more speed than anyone on the field.  I think they all have a purpose. I don't want to rule anyone out. There are too many opportunities for those guys to step up and make plays.”

No changes coming

Unless they’re injury related, coach Bowden said that there won’t be any changes to the line-up when the team plays the Miami RedHawks  (2-2, 1-0) at InfoCision Stadium.

With respect to those injuries, look for a shift in receives because of a broken leg suffered by Zach D’Orazio in Saturday’s game.  He broke his left fibula and underwent successful surgery Monday.  With Justin March out for up to two weeks due to an ankle injury, look for Troy Gilmer and Nick Rossi to get the lion’s share of his work.  His injury is the third to a member of the linebacking corps this season, hitting the team in an area not rich in depth to start. Left tackle Jarrod Pughsley played just a dozen snaps against the Volunteers because of a lingering ankle injury suffered prior to the opening game.  Bowden said that because the training staff was cautious with it, he will be nearly 100 percent healthy as the MAC season begins.

A little incentive

Coach Woody Hayes pioneered it while with Ohio State and other teams throughout the years adopted it.  Now it’s Akron’s turn.

The coaching began awarding “Z” stickers to players for their helmets.  As of right now, players receive four of them for a win only.  Bowden said it’s easier that way because there isn’t a fair system to award them to linemen on either side of the ball.

More recognition

Kicker Robert Stein received the East Division’s Special Teams Player of the Week award for his 4-for-4 effort on field goals against the Vols.  He also connected on two extra points.

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