Penn State football | RB Ford embraces role in Year 4 – TribDem.com

Uncategorized

Sunshine and clouds mixed. High around 55F. Winds SSE at 5 to 10 mph..
Cloudy with occasional rain after midnight. Low near 40F. Winds SSW at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 90%.
Updated: November 24, 2022 @ 12:25 am
Penn State running back Devyn Ford (28) runs to the end zone on a kickoff return during an intrasquad scrimmage at NCAA college football practice, Saturday, April 17, 2021, in State College, Pa. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

Penn State running back Devyn Ford (28) runs to the end zone on a kickoff return during an intrasquad scrimmage at NCAA college football practice, Saturday, April 17, 2021, in State College, Pa. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
STATE COLLEGE, Pa. – Entering his fourth season with the program, Devyn Ford lays claim to being the oldest of Penn State’s five scholarship running backs.
It’s not a title Ford takes lightly, even if his role in the backfield over the past three seasons has decreased.
“You carry yourself the same,” Ford said. “Don’t change anything up, be true to yourself, but also understand that you have to take the young guys under your wing and make sure they up the pace with you and do the same things you do. That’s what we work on every day.”
Ford’s first two seasons followed an upward trajectory, as the former four-star prospect accumulated 294 yards and six touchdowns on 119 carries.
His production in the backfield dipped in 2021, however, with Keyvone Lee holding the title of starter for most of the past two seasons.
“I feel like I’ve grown as a player on and off the field. I believe that,” Ford said. “What they’ve been teaching us, what they’ve been coaching us, I’ve taken it in day in and day out in my life. I’m trying to be one with the playbook, trying to be better with my footwork, technique and fundamentals.
“I’m just doing my best to be a better leader in the room, and make sure we know what we’re doing.”
Ford notched his lone start of 2021 against Iowa, but exited early with an injury after recording one carry. He played in 13 games in 2021 and tallied 13 carries for 57 yards. Ford did lead the Nittany Lions in kickoff return yards with 258 on 12 returns.
The redshirt junior made his debut as a Nittany Lion against Idaho in Week 1 of the 2019 season. He ripped off an 81-yard run in the first half that ended in a touchdown en route to a 107-yard outing. Ford registered carries in 12 of Penn State’s 13 games that season, capping his inaugural year in blue and white with a 1-yard scoring run in the Cotton Bowl.
In a shortened 2020 season, Ford played in six games.
and missed Penn State’s contest against Michigan following the death of a family member. He returned to the field the following week and posted 65 yards rushing and one touchdown on 11 carries.
Following the end of the 2021 season, Penn State running backs coach Ja’Juan Seider spoke with his players for the program’s customary end-of-the-year meetings. During the meeting, Seider said Ford inquired about his role with the offense.
“I said, ‘You forgot you started the Iowa game. You get nicked up (in the) Iowa game and we don’t get you for a few weeks. Keyvone gets going and it’s hard to get it back,’ ” Seider said. “I think he sees it. I think what we take for granted is being honest with kids, and having a coach look you in the eye and tell you exactly where he sees in you, what you need to work on and how to get better, and you willing to do it.”
Since joining the running back room in 2019, Ford has seen his share of turnover after a couple of defections to the NCAA’s transfer portal.
Fellow Virginian Ricky Slade transferred following the 2019 season and ended up at Old Dominion. Slade isn’t listed on Old Dominion’s 2022 roster. Ford’s 2019 recruiting classmate Noah Cain departed the program in January and is now at Louisiana State.
Seider praised Ford’s commitment and dedication to the program.
“You want to put your arm around the kid and tell him you appreciate him,” Seider said. “It’s so easy to quit, to tuck and run. The things that are important to him – getting a degree from Penn State, the relationship we have – I’m talking about me and him – as player and a coach. The relationship he has with Coach (James) Franklin and this program to say, ‘You know what? At the end of the day, those guys treat me fair, they love me, they care for me, they push me and it’s going to help me in the next 40 years of my life.’ ”
Penn State’s running back room in 2022 will feature a pair of blue-chip freshmen in former five-star prospect Nick Singleton and four-star prospect Kaytron Allen. Ford said he’ll continue to provide the leadership of a veteran player to the young running backs, while also working to improve himself.
“From spring to now, everyone has shown a lot of improvement, and I’ve seen some in myself, as well, too, in our running back group and in our room,” Ford said. “My success here has been pretty good and trending up. I like it and have been enjoying it. You have to take every single season as it is and work your best, work your hardest.”
Elton Hayes is a veteran sports writer who covers Penn State for CNHI LLC publications. Contact him at ehayes@cnhi.com or follow him on Twitter @EHDC12.
Elton Hayes is a veteran sports writer who covers Penn State for CNHI LLC publications. Contact him at ehayes@cnhi.com or follow him on Twitter @EHDC12.

On Monday afternoon, Penn State players and coaches gathered for the first practice of preseason camp ahead of the Sept. 1 season opener at Purdue.
{{description}}
Email notifications are only sent once a day, and only if there are new matching items.
Johnstown Magazine is a positive and forward-thinking monthly publication for the people of our region.
Sorry, there are no recent results for popular commented articles.
Sign up now to get our FREE breaking news coverage delivered right to your inbox.
First Amendment: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

source

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.