With injuries to both Donald Chaney and Trevonte’ Citizen, the Miami Hurricanes were down to three scholarship running backs. Head Coach Mario Cristobal once again reached into the transfer portal, this time for running back Lucious Stanley from UAB.
bringing in a running back out of UAB who barely rushed for over 1,000 yards in five seasons may not seem like a big deal at first look. But there are a few reasons why this could make a big difference long term in 2022.
Citizen is likely out for the season and Chaney will likely be out for much of the season. And hoping all three running backs stay healthy for 12 games is dangerous. Some walk-ons and other players could take reps in the backfield, but that doesn’t feel like a true solution.
Stanley, a six-foot, 215-pound back out of North Fort Myers, can slot in as fourth back who can take some of those extra reps down the stretch of the early games in the season, not including Texas A&M.
Jaylan Knighton and Henry Parrish are slotted to get most of the work at running back. Thaddius Franklin is third in the group but can provide some punishing running in short-yardage situations. Keeping the carries limited for all three of those players will be important in the games against Bethune-Cookman, Southern Miss, and Middle Tennessee State.
Late in those games when Miami should be up, an experienced back like Stanley can be relied on to eat up some carries and still be effective instead of putting unnessacary mileage on any of the three main guys. With the second and third units on offense, Franklin having someone he can have to spell him for plays will lower the likelihood he sustains any injuries due to exhaustion.
Lucious Stanley gives @UAB_FB the 20-point lead with this run. pic.twitter.com/1fT0LzmOJ4— CBS Sports Network (@CBSSportsNet) November 6, 2021
And yes, Stanley was pretty effective while he was with the Blazers. On 211 carries, he rushed for 1,081 yards and 12 touchdowns. That is 5.1 yards per carry throughout the 47 games he played in.
His lack of carries over five seasons in Birmingham may also be good for Josh Gattis and the Hurricanes’ offense. He averaged about 4.4 carries per game in his career, meaning he isn’t coming in with a bar he wants to meet for carries. His former coach praised him for his willingness to play a role in his career and is exactly what Miami needs as an extra body.
Bryant Vincent on former UAB RB Lucious Stanley, who is apparently walking on at Miami: When we had a couple of injuries that season, he was able to come in and give us some big games. Lucious was always ready for his role, he embraced his role and he really stepped up.— Steve Irvine (@SteveIrvine04) August 29, 2022
His best season came in 2019 when he had 414 yards and seven touchdowns, including a win over Rice where he had 19 carries for 88 yards and two touchdowns.
The rain didn't slow down Lucious Stanley!@UAB_FB's offense picks up right where it left off! pic.twitter.com/Yuv18kPwKS— Conference USA (@ConferenceUSA) October 6, 2019
Will Lucious Stanley be a player we look back on in five years as someone who changed this program? Probably not. But in week six, will we see him as someone who helped the team? I believe so. Even if that only means eating up some carries in late-game situations.