This is the sixth in a series of position group previews throughout Sacramento State training camp. To view all stories about the Hornets, select the "News" button at the top of the page.
SACRAMENTO STATE'S COLLEGE FOOTBALL KICKOFF IS COMING SOON
Get your 2019 college football season started the right way at Sacramento State's College Football Kickoff on Saturday, Aug. 24, at Hornet Stadium from 6-9 p.m.. The free, family-friendly event, will feature tailgate games, football drills, opportunities for pictures and autographs with Sacramento State coaches and players, and performances from the marching band, cheer and dance teams.
RUNNING BACKS PREVIEW
Sacramento State has the luxury of returning its leading rusher from the past two seasons in BJ Perkinson and Elijah Dotson. The duo has shown the ability to be a big-play threats and turned the Hornets into one of the top rushing teams in the Big Sky.
Dotson became the first Sacramento State running back to be named first team all-Big Sky since All-American Charles Roberts in 2000. Along with the all-conference accolade, Dotson was named an FCS Sophomore All-American following the season and earned second team preseason FCS All-America honors this summer.
Dotson was the catalyst for the Sacramento State offense last season, leading the team with 1,154 rushing yards, nine touchdowns and 1,314 all-purpose yards. His average of 115.4 yards per game was the third highest in school history while his total of 1,154 yards placed him seventh despite the team playing on 10 games during the regular season. He also moved into fifth place in school history with an average of 6.2 yards per carry.
In just two years, Dotson has already rushed for 1,629 yards which places him ninth at Sacramento State. His 14 career rushing touchdowns rank 11th, his average of 6.0 yards per carry places him third and his average of 77.6 rushing yards per game is seventh.
Perkinson led the Hornets with 591 rushing yards despite playing in only eight games as a freshman in 2017. That year, he averaged 7.0 yards per rush and finished with an average of 73.9 yards per game. Last season, he added 177 rushing yards and scored three touchdowns. He's also shown his value as a receiver, including catching two passes for 80 yards and a touchdown against San Diego State.
Ja'Narrick James and Darnay Smith are the only other returners at the position for the Hornets. James had 13 carries for 63 yards and scored a pair of touchdowns in his first season at Sacramento State last fall. Smith only played in the season opener where he had five attempts for 29 yards and a score against Saint Francis. He also saw some time at receiver during the spring.
The newcomers to the position are incoming freshmen Marcus Fulcher and Elijah Gable. Fulcher was the league Offensive Player of the Year after rushing for nearly 2,000 yards and 24 touchdowns at Bullard HS. Gable was the Southern Section co-Offensive Player of the Year with 1,173 yards and 23 touchdowns at Sierra Canyon HS.
Joey Wood re-unites with Troy Taylor after playing last season at Utah. Wood was a two-time all-conference running back at Los Gatos HS and began his collegate career at College of San Mateo. While there, he rushed for over 600 yards and scored eight touchdowns. Those numbers earned him a spot at Utah last season where he played in three games for the Utes.
Elijah Dotson (11 career starts, 1,629 career rushing yards, 14 career rushing TDs)
Elijah Dotson (6-0, 185, Jr., Sacramento, Calif./Antelope HS)
Hunter Hogue (5-7, 165, RFr., Firebaugh, Calif./Firebaugh HS)
Ja'Narrick James (5-4, 155, Sr., Sebastapol, Calif./Santa Rosa JC)
Darnay Smith (6-2, 190, RFr., Corona, Calif./Santiago HS)
BJ Perkinson (5-10, 200, Jr., Hawthorne, Calif./Lawndale HS)
Marcus Fulcher (5-9, 200, Fr., Fresno, Calif./Bullard HS)
Elijah Gable (5-5, 145, Fr., Sylmar, Calif./Sierra Canyon HS)
Joey Wood (5-10, 205, Sr., San Jose, Calif./Utah)