Tyler Allgeier On a Record-Setting Pace for BYU in 2021

Nov 2, 2021, 9:56 AM | Updated: 10:20 am
Tyler Allgeier - BYU Cougars - Virginia Cavaliers...
BYU running back Tyler Allgeier (Courtesy of BYU Photo)
(Courtesy of BYU Photo)

PROVO, Utah – Carrying the Cougars over the course of the season, Tyler Allgeier has been the engine keeping the BYU train moving. In just his second season as the starting running back, Allgeier has proven to be a workhorse back with the strength and endurance to wear down an opposing defense.

Through nine games in 2021, Tyler Allgeier has 197 rushing attempts for 1132 yards and 16 touchdowns. He is averaging 21.8 attempts a game, if he keeps that pace he will set the single-season rushing attempts record at BYU. Allgeier has four games, including the bowl game, to accomplish the feat. With his recent run of dominance, it seems inevitable that he will hit the mark.

BYU has a history of great running backs and players who carried their teams through winning seasons.  Let’s look at the top five in single-season rushing attempts at BYU, as heard on the “Top 5” segment on Cougar Sports Saturday (KSL Newsradio, Noon-3pm).

Top Five in Single-Season Rushing Attempts

1) Ronney Jenkins – 252 attempts (1998)

Probably not the name you expected to see at the top of this list, but lets give some credit to Ronney Jenkins. Heavily recruited out of high school, Jenkins played just two seasons for BYU in 1996 and 1998. In 1998 he did it all for the Cougars, helping the team end the season with a 9-5 record.

Jenkins ran the ball 252 times for 1307 yards and 13 touchdowns. He was also second on the team in receptions and third in receiving yards. Jenkins went on to play in the NFL, spending three seasons with the Chargers and one with the Raiders as a special teams players.

2) Taysom Hill – 246 attempts (2013)

Taysom Hill was electric during his time in Provo, especially during the 2013 season. Hill led the BYU offense alongside current Detroit Lions running back Jamaal Williams. The duo dominated opponents on the ground on route to an 8-5 season.

Hill had 246 carries for 1344 yards and 29 total touchdowns, 10 on the ground and 19 through the air. He led the team in rushing attempts and rushing yards. His signature game came against Texas, when he ran for 259 yards and 3 touchdowns. Hill had 34 rush attempts and 44 pass attempts against Houston as well.

3) Harvey Unga – 244 attempts (2007), 240 attempts (2008)

Harvey Unga is both third and fourth in single-season rush attempts and accomplished the feat in back-to-back seasons in 2007 and 2008. Unga had three-straight seasons with at least 200 rush attempts and 1000 rushing yards from 2007-2009.

In 2007 Harvey Unga had 244 rush attempts for 1227 yards and 13 touchdowns, all career-highs. He followed up that performance in 2008 with 240 rush attempts, 1132 yards and 11 touchdowns. Unga was the epitome of consistency at BYU, he contributed on the ground and through the air as a receiver. Unga is the current running backs coach at BYU, helping Tyler Allgeier prepare for a future in the NFL.

4) Jamaal Williams – 234 attempts (2016)

It wouldn’t be a list about BYU’s greatest rushers without an appearance from the Swag Daddy himself, Jamaal Williams. The all-time leader in almost everything in the running back stat books, Williams biggest season came in 2016, the first for current head coach Kalani Sitake.

Williams eased the challenges of a new regime for Sitake, carrying the load for a team in transition. He had career-highs in rushing attempts and rushing yards, 234 attempts and 1375 yards respectively. Williams statement in his senior season sent him soaring into the NFL, where he was selected in the fourth round by the Green Bay Packers.

5) Pete Van Valkenburg – 232 attempts (1972)

Cougars fans may not be familiar with the swift moves and strong running of Pete Van Valkenburg, but “Fleet Pete Van Valkenburg” was BYU’s first great running back. Van Valkenburg helped usher in the LaVell Edwards era for BYU, helping the first-year head coach navigate the year with a 7-4 record.

The All-American Van Valkenburg won the rushing title in 1972, running the ball 232 times for 1386 yards and 12 touchdowns. After his senior season in 1972, Van Valkenburg was drafted in the third round of the NFL draft by the New Orleans Saints.

With four games remaining in the season Tyler Allgeier has a record-setting pace for rushing attempts, but there is more work to do. If BYU wants to continue their winning ways, they’ll wisely feed the man who has always kept them moving.

Allgeier’s relentless running style wears down the opposing defense, the fourth quarter is where he does the most damage. Perhaps in the final quarter of the season we will see even more of that Tyler Allgeier dominance.

Dallen Graff is a KSL Sports Contributor. He is the Producer of Cougar Sports Saturday (SUBSCRIBE) on KSL NewsRadio. Follow him on Twitter.

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