May 23 / Rob

Jawon Hamilton Makes So Much Sense for JMU

Jawon Hamilton announced that he’s transferring to JMU from University of Central Florida. Hamilton is a running back who will join a JMU backfield featuring Marcus Marshall, Cardon Johnson, Trai Sharp, and Percy Agyei-Obese. He led the Golden Nights in rushing with 495 yards as a true freshman, prior to getting hurt in UCF’s Fake National Championship season in 2017 and redshirting. He’ll come to JMU with 3 years of remaining eligibility.

This move makes so much sense for JMU. Yes, running back doesn’t jump out as a position of need for JMU. With the 4 guys listed above, it’s clear the Dukes are pretty stacked at the position. But depth is critical at the position. It allows the coaches to play the hot hand or utilize players with different strengths against various defenses. Last year all 4 returning backs eclipsed the 100 yard mark in games. And history has taught us that running backs often go down with injuries. It’s important to have multiple guys who can be counted on to carry the rock. More importantly, as Greg Madia explained on our podcast, a transfer like Hamilton helps balance the classes. Marshall, Johnson, and Sharp are all seniors. While it would be unfair to say the cabin would be left dry with just Percy, the addition of Hamilton improves the team next year and beyond.

We were fortunate to chat with Coach Houston last night at the Duke Club Spring Tour event. First of all, he is incredibly optimistic about next season’s squad. He was practically giddy when discussing the potential of the defensive line. And he had lots to say about Hamilton. Houston insists the kid is a player and that he’ll contribute this upcoming season. The injury he suffered is completely healed and he’s ready to go. But Coach said that the move is really about the future. It’s only May and I was ready to drive straight to Bridgeforth after talking to him. Hamilton was being pursued by other FBS programs and he’s a great get for Houston and the Dukes. He’s a kid who had offers from schools such as Louisville and Miami coming out of high school. He’ll join a Dukes rushing attack that was already dynamic. Now it’s just scary.

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