Raw Hyde: The Return of El Guapo

By Michael Citro on March 8, 2013 at 1:00p

All the skeptics who thought a power running back couldn’t thrive in an Urban Meyer offense were proven completely wrong last season, as Carlos Hyde rumbled for 970 yards and 16 touchdowns on just 185 carries. That’s an average of 5.2 yards per carry against defenses that were mostly designed to stop running plays and ignore passing plays.

And power backs don’t get much more powerful than Carlos Hyde.

Rollin', rollin', rollin.After flirting with the idea of the NFL Draft, Hyde is back.

Hyde returns for his senior year after considering the option of turning pro after his successful junior year. Another campaign under Urban F. Meyer couldn’t hurt. A potential championship run and a chance to boost his NFL Draft stock provided plenty of incentive for El Guapo to return to Columbus for one more go.

Alex introduced you to Carlos Hyde just over four years ago, back in February of 2009. He endeared himself to us immediately by saying, “I love trucking people that get in my way.”  He also displayed plenty of confidence, telling Alex that Buckeye fans would soon find they had “a special player coming to run the ball for them.”

How could you not love El Guapo? ¡Es imposible!

Hyde began his freshman campaign the way many OSU running backs do — as a little-used backup who primarily got his carries at garbage time. He came in with the 2010 class, along with fellow running backs Rod Smith and Jaamal Berry. He was down in the rushing pecking order behind sophomore Jordan Hall, junior Boom Herron, and senior Brandon Saine. He lugged the ball only 24 times as a frosh, gaining 141 yards for a nifty 5.9-yard average.

All Hell broke loose with the Buckeyes after that 2010 campaign, with Hyde losing his head coach and starting quarterback. But when the season started, he took on a bit more of the load with the end of Saine’s eligibility and Herron’s suspension. Along with the loss of Jim Tressel — father of Tresselball — and Terrelle Pryor, Hyde and the Ohio State offense were further hampered by offensive coordinator Jim Bollman’s very presence uninventive play calling, the Scud missile stylings of quarterback Joe Bauserman, and the inexperience of his eventual replacement, freshman Braxton Miller.

His 2011 season under Luke Fickell got off to a promising start, due in part to suspensions of runners in front of him. Hall was nailed for receiving impermissible benefits at a charity event, while Herron got extra time tacked on in addition to his Tatgate punishment. Hyde toted the rock 106 times for 566 yards and six touchdowns in 2011 and caught 10 passes for 73 yards. 

With a larger role than expected in the opener, Hyde chugged for 93 yards on 19 carries in a deceptively smooth season-opening 42-0 annihilation of Akron. The sledding got a little tougher in a narrow Week 2 escape against Toledo, but Hyde still managed a respectable 76 yards on 20 carries, scoring twice. As Hall returned from suspension, Hyde’s role shrunk over the next several games. Then the Buckeyes went to Lincoln to face Nebraska. He ran 13 times that night for 104 yards and scored twice, including a 63-yard TD. You'll cringe at the memory of the blown lead after Braxton's injury, but Carlos was solid.

Even though the Buckeyes lost, Hyde had arrived. But Boom was back the next week and Hyde slipped down the depth chart, carrying only three times in Ohio State’s next two games. But against Indiana he emerged late in a lopsided game to rush 15 times for 105 yards — including a 47-yarder — and another score in a 34-20 win.

That performance against the Hoosiers proved to be the last gasp for the lost season. Hyde carried only 13 times for 53 yards over the final four games — all losses. The 6-7 season was mercifully over, Meyer took over as head coach, and Mickey Marotti arrived on campus to whip the Buckeyes into game shape.

The transition from the Tresselball and Zombie-Luke Fickell years was gradual for Hyde. He put up 82 yards and two touchdowns on 17 carries in the destruction of Miami to open 2012. Then disaster struck in Week 2, when Carlos injured his knee after seven carries and 27 yards against UCF. He was forced to miss the next two games against California and UAB with a sprained MCL.

Meyer worked Hyde back into the lineup slowly in his return at Michigan State. He managed 49 yards on 11 carries — not bad against a pretty stout defensive front. The Buckeyes were Braxton-heavy in that game, as the sophomore quarterback ran 23 times for 136 yards and completed 16/23 for 179 yards and this awesome touchdown to Devin Smith.

Beating the Badgers...always awesome.Hyde scored twice in Madison, including the winner in OT.

The following week the Cornhuskers came to Columbus, awakening the beast in Mr. Hyde. In 2011, Hyde had posted his career-best run of 63 yards. That number came into play again versus the Huskers, with the Buckeyes hanging that many points on Nebraska. Hyde was a large reason why, rushing for 140 yards and four touchdowns on 28 carries, earning B1G Co-Player of the Week honors.

The next week at Indiana, he ran amok for a career-high 156 yards and another score on 22 carries — a 7.1 average — in a 52-49 road win that you remember because the Hoosiers significantly shortened the margin of victory at garbage time. Hyde also caught two passes for 27 yards and a touchdown in Bloomington. He followed with 19 carries for 91 yards and a touchdown in a win over Purdue, but the next week Penn State did a nice job bottling him up for only 55 yards on 22 carries — his worst full-game performance of the season.

Over the next two weeks, Hyde averaged only 17 carries, gaining 137 and three touchdowns in a 52-22 thumping of Illinois, and 87 yards and two scores in an overtime win at Wisconsin. He only carried 15 times in Madison, which may have contributed in part to Ohio State’s offensive struggles, but he did power in for the game-winning touchdown.

Meyer and Tom Herman learned from the Wisconsin game, feeding Hyde 26 times in the season finale against Michigan. El Guapo rewarded the coaching staff for its faith in him, racking up 146 yards and a three-yard touchdown. Hyde was a one-man closer in the game’s waning minutes, ramming through the Michigan front seven for first down after first down with the Wolverines helpless to stop him despite the knowledge he was coming.

It was a glorious finish to an excellent season for Hyde, but it ended 30 yards shy of the 1,000 mark. If not for the knee injury against Central Florida, he would easily have become the first running back to gain a grand under Meyer (although Braxton Miller did eclipse 1,000 yards from his quarterback position).

If Hyde stays healthy in his second season in the Meyer/Herman offense, behind an outstanding and experienced offensive line, he should be able to reach that mark in his senior season. More of the playbook will be unveiled in Year 2, and Meyer is eager to incorporate principles of the San Francisco 49ers offense. Ross told you on Tuesday about the new inside zone emphasis he saw in the first spring practice.

Meyer’s power back worked out just fine in 2012, but he’ll be looking to add more explosive plays in 2013. With new wrinkles, a more efficient Miller throwing the ball, and another year of experience, Hyde should be able to add more long runs, such as he had in 2011. So Hyde yo wife. Hyde yo kids. Carlos is coming.

As it’s still only spring practice, I’ll leave you with his pancake of Stan Drayton from last spring.


Comments Show All Comments

DMcDougal24's picture

Now I need to go watch Three Amigos. 

ATXbucknut's picture

Good write-up. I think Hyde is a bit underrated in the B1G and maybe even nationally.  With an improved passing game, he should see lanes open up a bit more this year.
He is easily a 1200-yard rusher if he stays healthy this year. He might even flirt with 1500 yards.

45has2's picture

I get a smile just as big as UFM's when I watch Mr. Hyde bring the pain.

"I don't like nice people. I like tough, honest people." -W.W. Hayes

DannyBeane's picture

I like this article sooooo much.

cinserious's picture

Actually Hyde was a 2009 recruit along with Jamaaaal Berry and Jordan Hall. Hall played as a freshman but Hyde and Berry redshirted. in 2010 they were redshirt freshmen and Rod Smith was a true freshman (I think he reshirted too).

One day I will valiantly become a political prisoner of 11W jail.

Michael Citro's picture


Not sure about Smith, and I didn't follow recruiting very closely then, but far be it from me to argue with Ohio State's sports information dept. If it's wrong, let them know.


played in seven games as a true freshman in 2010


Edit: After further review, Hyde went to Fork Union Military Academy in 2009 and enrolled at OSU in Jan. 2010.

BorderBuckeye's picture

I am surprised that it has taken this long for Hyde! I saw the videos of him as a recruit and was very impressed. He could really tote that rock with smashmouth power! I expected great things from him and was as impressed with him as any other recruit in several years. I guess he is now finally getting his chance and "running with it"!:) Go Hyde and GO BUCKS!!

MediBuck's picture

Hyde is gonna be disgustingly productive this year. I hope he'll find ways to be more explosive once he gets to the second level, but at almost 6ypc, I can't complain. That, and his impressive ball security make for a dream workhorse back.

"There is a force that makes us all brothers, no one goes his way alone." --Woody Hayes

FitzBuck's picture

+1 for roll Hyde.  

Fitzbuck | Toledo - Ohio's right armpit | "A troll by any other name is still a troll".

FitzBuck's picture

Hypothetically if Ohio State would play Bama could one of our talented graphic designers on this site make a t shirt of El Guapo blasting an elephant from the side with the caption "Roll Hyde" 
i would buy several of those.  

Fitzbuck | Toledo - Ohio's right armpit | "A troll by any other name is still a troll".

osubuck57's picture

Think he has a bright future this year and for years to come.Got a little Earl Campbell in him .lol


Denny's picture

I need a cigarette after watching that .gif


Rapping Bum's picture


Help is on the way.

hail2victors9's picture

Not sure if anyone else took a blast to the past, but if you look at the old article, it's crazy how I didn't recognize any posters.  Maybe you old timers have all changed your usernames?  Turns out, there was a Michigan fan on 11w way back in 2009 (now that's a ballsy time for a UofM fan to be hanging out here). 
Also, I went link jumping and found this gem in the comments from an article about Cris Carter and his hating of a Michigan blog.

"Cris Carter is cool....I hope he tells his son to come to Columbus!!!"


Those who stay will be CHAMPIONS!

~Bo Schembechler

BTwrestle04's picture

Been here since 2007 and I still don't recognize some of those names.

JeffCoBuck's picture

So many times (more than I'd care to remember), I've followed a team that with merely one more first down would've iced a game I was watching.  More often than not, my team didn't get it.  That last drive against M*ch*g*n in November was a Thing.  Of.  Beauty.  I will always love Carlos for that, not only because it was against TTUN, but it iced an undefeated regular season.  I think he will be absolutely dominant this year.  I can't wait.

JYBUCKEYE's picture

 If I could upvote you I would.  I could not agree more.  I will always love him for mocking Denard with god awful "feed me" thing he did.

SPreston2001's picture

Lol its a "eat em up" reference!! Lol you people are so out of touch! Denard didnt invent that gesture either its been around for awhile...

JYBUCKEYE's picture

I'm not out of touch. I just taught my 4 year old to "raise the roof" after he gets a hit in tee ball. Take that. 

buckeyedude's picture

I upvoted ya bro. I was a fan of El Guapo when it was uncool to be a fan of El Guapo.
 I know there are a lot of R. Smith supporters out there just waiting for him to have his "breakout season". I do hope Smith has a good year. But he will not leapfrog Hyde. Ever.
I've always been a guy that supports players that are a little underrated and perform beyond their God given physical abilities. Dane, AJ Hawk, Brian Hartline come to mind. El Guapo had some hype coming in from Florida, but has been underrated by some fans and even some of the OSU coaches, in the past. No more. 
I think Hyde had reason to be pissed off in 2011, so it is really cool to see how he finally getting the respect he deserves. I for one am fricking thrilled to see him stay for his senior year!
Mas grande El Guapo!



BoFuquel's picture

Nobody on this team finishes like Mr. Hyde.Keep calm and run Dave and we'll buck'em all.GO BUCKS! 

I wish I didn't know now what I didn't know then.

Buckeye_in_SEC_country's picture

I hope Hyde has a phenomenal senior season and proves to some young high school kids they can play power back in OSU's offense. 

bedheadjc's picture

"Scud missile stylings of quarterback Joe Bauserman"

Dougger's picture

Great write up. I was upset in 2010 when his carries diminished, I really thought he had earned more PT with that Nebraska game. He's a beast! Feed the man!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I like football

doodah_man's picture

When he said in an interview that he is not a juking type guy, he likes to run through people...I cried like a little girl...and somewhere, Woody smiled...

Jim "DooDah" Day

"If I were giving a young man advice as to how he might succeed in life, I would say to him, pick out a good father and mother, and begin life in Ohio.” --Wilbur Wright, 1910

villagebuckeye's picture

Hyde flattening the coach is great.... The smile on Urban's face is priceless

timhbomb's picture

he earned the starting RB position and I love watching him play. his nose for the end zone is incredible.

brylee's picture

knocked coach on his ass!!!

Citrus's picture

Hyde is going to do some mean things to defenders this year. He is going to truck them and then takes their mothers out to a nice steak dinner but never call again.

el duderino's picture

At the risk of sounding completely ignorant, and incurring the wrath of the commentariat, I would like to ask a question that's been irking me for the better part of the last year.
Why is Carlos Hyde's nickname "El Guapo"?

"This is a very complicated case: a lot of ins, lot of outs, lot of what-have-yous."

Maestro's picture

because he likes sweaters, duh.

vacuuming sucks

Baroclinicity's picture

He also knows what a "plethora" is.

When you're holding a hammer, everything looks like a nail.

cinserious's picture

El Guapo in Spanish means "handsome".  Carlos (Jeckyll) is such a nice handsome fellow with his helmet off, but once it goes on (Hyde's) alter ego comes out and he's a mEan DeStukTivE monster!

One day I will valiantly become a political prisoner of 11W jail.

Hovenaut's picture

I love this offense. Brax has been great on his feet, and now with Hall back along with all the young talent I think we see the spread in full this fall.

So do opposing defenses. And they'll respect it, and try to shut it down.

And then they forget #34....

Brax is a deserving Heisman candidate, but it would not shock me at all if Hyde got in that discussion somewhere along the line.

alust2013's picture

I've always wondered why Hyde didn't get used more in 2011 or even 2010. I think he's the best back we have had since Beanie. Either way, I think he is going to wreck defenses this year. Like Nebraska's. Again.
Love that GIF too, Urban definitely liked that hit.

...and Michigan still sucks.

AndyVance's picture

So Hyde yo wife. Hyde yo kids. Carlos is coming.

Best line of the day.

Arizona_Buckeye's picture

How can you not love El Guapo?!?!?!  The kid just loves running over people and he was a BEAST against AACC!  I cannot wait for this year because he is just going to be a destroyer of defenses!  With the weapons Urban is recruiting, the return of Jordan, the continued improvement of Braxton - it will not be pretty for many teams this year!
That vid of him blowing up the coach is fucking priceless, especially the expression on Urban's face.

The best thing about Pastafarianism? It is not only acceptable, but advisable, to be heavily sauced

buckeyedude's picture

What's really funny is Drayton knew it was coming, braced himself....braced himself...braced himself for impact of oncoming TRAIN, and still got knocked the F$%# down. The look on Drayton's face is as priceless as Urban's.