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Tyler Allgeier’s Sophomore Season Has Him On Pace to Join BYU Greats

(Courtesy of Jaren Wilkey, BYU Photo)

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – The 2020 football campaign featured a high-powered offense, led by a Heisman-candidate at quarterback, and a stellar defense that would bend and never break. The BYU Cougars finished 11-1 and 11th in the final AP poll, their best finish since 1996. Overlooked through all of the success this past season was sophomore running back Tyler Allgeier.

In 2020, Allgeier took over a big hole at running back and had BYU’s first 1000 yard rushing season since Jamaal Williams in 2016. He had only 150 rushing attempts, but compiled 1130 rushing yards to go with 13 touchdowns. Allgeier has had only one season as the starting running back and will retain his eligibility for this season, along with all other college football players.

The Fontana, CA native has years of production ahead of him and with a new QB and continued strength on the offensive line, Allgeier could be looking at a big workload in 2021. At the very least, Tyler Allgeier’s sophomore season has him on pace to join some of BYU’s greatest backs. Here is the list of the Top 5 in career rushing yards at BYU, as heard on the “Top 5” segment on Cougar Sports Saturday (KSL Newsradio, Noon-3pm).

Top 5 in Career Rushing Yards at BYU

Jamaal Williams 3901 yards (2012-2016)

The Swag Daddy himself, Jamaal Williams brought a swagger and energy to the Cougars during his time in Provo. Another Fontana, CA native, Williams holds many BYU records, including career rushing yards, rushing attempts, 100-yard rushing games and the most rushing yards in a single game (286 yards against Toledo in 2016). Williams went on from BYU to be drafted in the third round by the Green Bay Packers.

Harvey Unga 3455 yards (2006-2009)

The current BYU running backs coach, Unga is the only player in BYU history to put up back-to-back-to-back 1000 yard rushing seasons. In 2007, Unga set the Mountain West record for rushing yards by a freshman (1227 yards) and earned freshman All-American honors. He was also a prolific pass catcher with over 1000 receiving yards in his BYU career: becoming just the second player in BYU history with 3000 rushing yards and 1000 receiving yards.

Curtis Brown 3221 yards (2002-2006)

The predecessor of Harvey Unga, Brown became BYU’s career rushing leader at the end of his time in Provo. He was the first player in BYU history to achieve back-to-back 1000 yard rushing seasons. Brown was the main ball-carrier for the Cougars from 2004-2006, which included an 11-win season in 2006 led by quarterback John Beck.

Jamal Willis 2970 yards (1991-1994)

As a sophomore in 1992, Willis rushed for just over 1000 yards. He was the first BYU player to rush for 1000 yards since Pete Van Valkenburg twenty years prior. Willis reached the 1000 yard mark twice during his time in Provo, including during a 10-win season in 1994 as a senior. Willis initiated a run of consistent running back play for the Cougars; since his first 1000 yard season in 1992, BYU hasn’t gone more than three seasons without one.

Taysom Hill 2815 yards (2012-2016)

The lone non-running back to make this list, Hill lit up the field during his time at BYU. He’s the all-time leader in rushing yards by a quarterback and he sits fourth all-time in career total offense, behind Ty Detmer, John Beck and Max Hall. Combined with his passing ability, Hill was the ultimate weapon for the Cougar offense. His 75 total career touchdowns ranks fifth all-time at BYU and he ranks 11th in career passing yards.

Tyler Allgeier has years of play ahead of him at BYU. Only a sophomore, his 1130 rushing yards last season already puts him on an exclusive list of BYU players. In 2020, Allgeier became the 11th different BYU player to rush for 1000 yards in a season. His tough running behind one of college football’s best offensive lines opened up the passing game for quarterback Zach Wilson.

In 2021, it will be a different look for the Cougars. Zach Wilson has moved on to the NFL and a new signal-caller will be under center. BYU’s top offensive lineman is also going to the NFL, with AP All-American Brady Christensen declaring early for the NFL Draft as well. Even with the losses of Christensen and others, this BYU offensive line will continue to be a strength of the offense next season. With that much turnover, BYU will need to rely on its strengths and on offense that will be the run game.

Allgeier is primed for another 1000 yard season for BYU. Running behind a talented offensive line in 2021 should bear fruits for BYU’s offense and put him well on pace to rank among BYU’s greats by the end of his career.

Listen to the entire segment from Cougar Sports Saturday discussing Tyler Allgeier and the career leaders in rushing yards at BYU.

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