The back of his jersey reads Homer, and throughout his high school Miami running back Travis Homer was a home run threat. With over 1300 rushing yards in 10 games his senior season, Homer cemented himself as a four-prospect at Oxbridge Academy. After signing his letter of intent in 2016, Homer entered a loaded backfield his freshman year.
With veterans on the depth chart such as Gus Edwards and Joseph Yearby, Miami fans mostly saw the #24 jersey on special teams with hard hits.
“[Special teams] gave me the experience to be in a game-like situation,” Homer said Thursday after practice. “I just had to take full advantage of that.”
But while Homer excelled on special teams throughout his freshman year, his role will be much larger in 2017.
With the departure of both Gus Edwards and Joseph Yearby, Homer has shot up to number two on the depth chart. The biggest concern; however, comes below him on the depth chart with the projected number three and four running back recovering from injuries.
“We pray a lot,” head coach Mark Richt said jokingly after practice Tuesday. “We don’t want anybody to get hurt obviously, but there’s certain positions if you had one of two [injuries] you’re like, ‘I have no earthly idea what we will do’.”
After the recent injury for freshman Robert Burns, the Hurricanes are down to two scholarship running backs practicing this Spring.
“We just definitely have to keep our conditioning up as a group,” Homer said. “And just keep working ourselves so we can get better as a team.”
To the coaching staff; however, the quality that sets Homer apart comes off the field.
“Travis has always been a very mature guy from day 1,” running backs coach Thomas Brown said Thursday. “I think compared to most guys coming out of high school just trying to continue to push himself every single day and battle more.”
Homer has battled thus far in practice, and due to the circumstances he will have no choice but to perform this season.
Mark Walton will be the lead back for the Miami Hurricanes this season, but the ownness is on Homer to provide a one two punch.
Walton and Yearby complimented each other perfectly at times last season, and Homer’s breakaway ability will be crucial for Miami next year.
Homer said that he will continue to cover kicks on special teams and has received some reps in the return game this Spring, and only time will tell if he has a breakout season.
Because after all, if he doesn’t, where does Miami turn?