All season long the Oklahoma Sooners have desperately been trying to find a game-changer at the running back position. They’ve had some solid performances but nothing to help take their offense to another level.
Then came Gavin Sawchuk. Sawchuk really burst on the scene in the 2nd half vs. the UCF Knights. Since that game, he’s averaging 87 yards per game and has three straight 100-yard rushing games. If you take that 87 yards per game and projected it across a 12-game season, he’d finish with more than 1,000 yards.
His biggest play came in a tie-ball game midway through the 4th Quarter. The Sooners’ defense just forced a fumble, but the offense was facing a 3rd and 1. Jackson Arnold handed it off to Sawchuk, who broke about two or three tackles on his way to a 16-yard touchdown to put OU up 31-24.
Sawchuk spoke about the trust the team has in him with the media after the game.
“It’s great to be a part of this team,” Sawchuk said. “To really be supporting these guys and having a major role on this team. But it’s earned like everything else. You earn it at practice fields. So, I see everybody working hard so whoever is out there I’m going to have complete trust in what they’re going to do and trust they’re going to perform on the field.”
Sawchuk finished with 14 carries for 107 yards and a touchdown. He had five runs of 10 yards or more and three runs of 15 yards or more. He’s providing the explosiveness that people were excited about when he committed out of Littleton, Col. What he showed on Saturday against BYU is he’s not simply a fast, quick-twitch runner. He’s capable of taking on contact, running through tackles, and driving for the dirty yards.
According to Pro Football Focus, he averaged five yards per carry after contact against BYU.
Now the hope is he’s able to continue that success next week against the TCU Horned Frogs.