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Shane Vereen Roundtable: Best Cal Running Back Of The Tedford Era?

Shane Vereen wasn't given much to work with on his way to a thousand yard rushing season.
Shane Vereen wasn't given much to work with on his way to a thousand yard rushing season.

First of a two-parter about Cal running backs. This one focuses on our workhorse this past season, as he is at the very least 50-50 to turn pro.

1. If Shane Vereen had a decent offensive line the past two seasons, would we consider him the best Cal tailback of the Tedford era right now? As it is now, where does he rank?

Kodiak: He would have to be in the discussion.  Projecting Shane playing with Arrington's team or subbing him in for Marshawn or Forsett...pretty tough call.  I'm almost inclined to give Shane the nod over each of them...better speed than JJ, better vision than Marshawn, better hands/power than Forsett.  However, if you put Jahvid on any of those teams, I think he would have had the best season of any Cal tailback of all time.  I love all those guys.  I suppose if I had to, I'd go Jahvid, Shane, Marshawn, Forsett, JJ.


Ohio Bear: Vereen is very good, but I don't think we would consider him to be the "best" of the Tedford era. I think that Beast Mode and Best still have the explosiveness factor that puts them a cut above. And you can't forget J.J. Arrington's 2004 season, albeit he got to play with one of the best (if not THE best) offensive line of the era.

To actually answer the call of the question on # 1, I'd rank them:

1. Beast Mode, 2. Best, 3. J.J., 4. Vereen, 5. Forsett, 6. Ech, 7. Igber

solarise:  The way I see it:

1. Beast Mode
2. Best
3. JJ
4. Vereen
5. Forsett

Certainly, w/ better OL blocking, Vereen could've eclipsed JJ. However, w/ Marshawn & Jahvid I had more confidence that they were going to make something happen every play. Vereen is steady but lacks that particular excitement factor.

Berkelium97:  Shane Vereen is a fantastic back, but I have difficulty naming him the best back under Tedford.  He's probably the most versatile, but he doesn't have that...'wow' factor (for lack of a better term) that Marshawn and Jahvid had.  If you put Jahvid in the '04 team, he'd probably be the best back of the Tedford era.  Vereen has great vision, great hands, and excellent ball security.  He has all the makings of an excellent NFL prospect, but he's missing that sprinkle of magic that Jahvid and Marshawn had.  Maybe he just needed to ghost ride the injury cart after the '09 Big Game...


2. Will Vereen stay or will he go? Should he stay or should he go?

Kodiak: He should go and he will.  Nothing left to prove.  I suspect he got dinged up this year again.  Playing behind an unproven Oline with an unproven QB...well, we saw how the last few games went.  Run free Shane.  Run free.

Ohio Bear: He will go. And he probably should. Academically, he has nothing left to prove: he is graduating in May. Athletically, why should he stay? Is there any reason to believe he will be playing behind a more adept offensive line next year?

solarise: I think Vereen will go, and he should.

Berkelium97: He should be able to finish up his degree this year, and there's nothing he has to prove next year.  I'd love for him to stay (because I would be mildly concerned about the running game otherwise), but I'd be very surprised if he dons the Cal uniform next year.