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Recruiting Spotlight: Vols Add Touted RB Bourque


Recruiting Spotlight will take an in depth look at Vol commitments from the Class of 2012 and provide insight into where the player fits into the team and the impact they will have. 

After a tough season on the ground for the Vols where they ranked 117th out of 120 team in rushing in FBS, the tide seems to be turning with the addition of Louisiana Running Back Davante Bourque. Ranked as a 4-star recruit by Rivals, Bourque is a big back, listed at 6’3″ 200 pounds and looks like a perfect complimentary back to returning Sophomore Marlin Lane.

Bourque began as a Texas A&M commit but once the hometown Tigers of LSU came calling, Bourque had no doubt and shifted his commitment to the Tigers. However, as the recruitment process went forward, Bourque began to get worried as Coach Les Miles continued to recruit touted RB’s for the Tigers and he felt as if was getting ‘back doored’ by Miles and the staff. This prompted a decommitment from his pledge to LSU and he reopened up his recruitment back up.

Here’s where the story gets real good, then swoops in the dramatic hero to save the day as Derek Dooley and staff made it key to add another highly rated RB to this year’s class. They got just that in Bourque.

What I like most about Bourque is his running style, he is a big back, ala Darren McFadden, Matt Forte, Arian Foster, but uses his size to his advantage and seems to have defenders just fall off of him in his highlights. Translation: this kid runs strong and fast… not a bad combination to have.

Another good factor in Bourque’s favor is the loss of the graduating Tauren Poole. This is an open backfield ready for the taking and a combination of Lane and Bourque could really do some damage in the SEC if the Offensive Line is sured up under new coach Sam Pittman.

Pittman has been rumored to be bringing a man blocking system that utilizes a power running game and is succesfully used with a group of strong and slower offensive line group. This fits UT perfectly as Ju’Wan James, Zach Fulton, Dallas Thomas, Marcus Jackson, and Alex Bullard are all bigger lineman, avergaing around 6’4″ 310 as a group.

Last season, Harry Heistrand utilized a zone blocking scheme similar to that of the Green Bay Packers and this ultimately was not a good fit for UT. With the addition and welcomed change of scheme behind Coach Pittman, I think the running game will make substantial strides next season and Bourque could be a big reason for it. Look for this big bruiser to break out in a big way for the Vols in 2012.

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