Goodson Among Breakout Stars

John Bohnenkamp

Iowa running back Tyler Goodson had an impressive season as a true freshman in 2019.

Goodson led the Hawkeyes with 638 rushing yards and five rushing touchdowns last season, playing in all 13 games.

Goodson was listed as one of the top under-the-radar stars for the 2020 college football season by ESPN on Monday.

ESPN's David M. Hale writes on Goodson:

Goodson's speed is his best asset, and the number of evaded tackles showcases how dangerous he can be with the ball in his hands. As Iowa coach Kirk Ferentz saw it, however, that speed also worked against Goodson at times.

"There are things he can improve -- getting bigger, stronger and having more expertise," Ferentz said. "The biggest thing is just to go out and play and not try to hit a home run every time. If he can get the spark plays on top of consistency, that's a big thing for a team."

Indeed, Goodson's high rate of stuffed runs signals a bit of impatience (not to mention some shaky offensive-line play), but if he improves as Ferentz believes he will in 2020, there's a high ceiling for the sophomore runner.

Perhaps the biggest highlight on Goodson's résumé, however, was his production against top-tier defenses. While Goodson had his ups and downs throughout 2019, against top-50 defenses, he was terrific, averaging 6.1 yards per carry (10th among FBS RBs) with nearly half his carries going for 5 yards or more.

One statistic quoted by Hale: Only four running backs with 100 or more rushes had a higher percentage stopped at or behind the line of scrimmage than Goodson's 26.1%. When Goodson crossed the line, however, he averaged 7 yards per carry.