Doug Williams in no rush to name new starting running back at Grambling

Grambling’s reworked running back squad is starting to come together.

“We’ve got some young guys really competing in practice,” returning Tigers coach Doug Williams told me. “Watching them run, you see they have the instinct to play.”

Redshirt sophomore Dawrence Roberts entered these fall sessions penciled in as the starter as halfback, with shifty senior scatback Kenneth Batiste as the backup. Grambling’s roster also includes San Diego State transfer Anthony Miller, along with freshmen Devon Flynn, Juwan Martin, Tareyton Banks and Jamar Jones.

Their quick maturation is all the more important as Williams’ team continues to sort through an unsettled situation under center.

“We’ve got to try to take the pressure off these young quarterbacks,” Williams said. “There are three ways to do that: Play defensive exceptionally well, to give us the ball back. Special teams has to make some plays. And running the ball.”

While fans can expect to see a combination of players at the position early in this 2011 campaign, don’t expect Williams to follow the NFL trend of running back by committee.

“I don’t think we have a choice except to find a guy,” Williams said. “I don’t think we can do that. Somebody has to win it over. You will probably see one or two or three guys play in a game, but that’s only until one is really established.”

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