Ranking All-Purpose Yards Per Game Performers of the Urban Meyer Era

By Chris Lauderback on December 13, 2017 at 4:15 pm
Parris Campbell and J.K. Dobbins each have over 1,000 all-purpose yards in 2017 with one game to play. (Dobbins photo: Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports)

With one game yet to play in the 2017 season, J.K. Dobbins and Parris Campbell both have over 1,000 all-purpose yards to their credit, joining names like Ezekiel Elliott, Carlos Hyde, Braxton Miller and Dontre Wilson in a club that typically features two players per year during the Urban Meyer era. 

Of the 11 players to eclipse the 1,000-yard barrier, Dobbins currently slots fifth in both total yards and yards per game with 1,499 total yards on 115.3 per outing. 

Facing what is just the 56th-ranked rush defense in USC, Dobbins has a realistic chance to post the necessary 157 all-purpose yards to move past Curtis Samuel who tallied 1,655 all-purpose yards a season ago. 

Doing so would cap a remarkable true freshman season and go along way toward helping Ohio State finish the season with a 12-2 record featuring wins over Penn State, Michigan State, Michigan, Wisconsin and the Trojans. 

Joining Dobbins in the 1,000-yard club this year, Campbell currently slots last among his Buckeye brethren of Meyer season's past with 1,006 yards.

Campbell, even with ongoing bouts of the dropsies, has proven a big play machine when given a crease coming off a crossing route and leads the Buckeyes with 48.9 receiving yards per game. 

Unfortunately for Campbell, and Ohio State, a concussion suffered early in the Penn State game essentially led to his removal as the primary kickoff return man despite elite skill in this area. 

Before the blow to his head, Campbell boasted a 36.6 yard average on nine kickoff returns including a long of 82. Who knows if Campbell could've held that lofty average had he stayed on as the main return guy but it's worth noting that 36.6 yard average would rank second nationally

Assuming Campbell remains sidelined on kickoffs, he would need just 63 rush/rec yards to pass Miller for 10th place during the Meyer era. 

E. ELLIOTT 2015 13 1,821 206 13 0 2,040 156.9
C. HYDE 2013 11 1,521 147 0 0 1,668 151.6
E. ELLIOTT 2014 15 1,878 220 0 16 2,114 140.9
C. SAMUEL 2016 13 771 865 19 0 1,655 127.3
J.K. DOBBINS 2017 13 1,364 135 0 0 1,499 115.3
D. WILSON 2014 10 100 300 186 528 1,064 106.4
B. MILLER 2012 11 1,271 0 0 0 1,271 105.9
C. HYDE 2012 10 970 51 0 0 1,021 102.1
M. WEBER 2016 13 1,096 91 0 0 1,187 91.3
B. MILLER 2013 12 1,068 0 0 0 1,068 89.0
P. CAMPBELL 2017 12 90 587 0 329 1,006 89.8

In addition to the list of guys who did break the 1,000-yard threshold, another seven players fell just shy of the mark during Meyer's six years in Columbus. 

Philly Brown made a run at 1,000 in both 2012 and 2013 finishing with 986 and 992, respectively. Wilson also came up just short in 2013 tallying 983 including a hefty 523 yards on kickoff return. 

In 2014, three guys made a run at joining Elliott (2,144) and Wilson (1,064) as Jalin Marshall went for 983, J.T. Barrett put up 938 yards rushing and Devin Smith logged 931 receiving. 

A year later, Marshall threatened but finished with 922 and last year only Barrett (845) was even close to joining Curtis Samuel (1,655) and Mike Weber (1,187). 

As for the chances anyone joins Dobbins and Campbell this year, K.J. Hill sits at 840 yards entering the Cotton Bowl while Weber has 829.

Both are long-shots to crack 1,000 but assuming each continues their current duties as the primary kickoff return man (Weber) and punt returner (Hill), it's at least possible a big day in the return games complemented by productive offensive outings could allow each to join the club.

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