Wesley Tate has waited his turn to be the featured running back for the Vanderbilt Commodores. He waited behind Warren Norman and then Zac Stacy. Now a senior, Tate is hoping to get his share of the carries for Vanderbilt during the 2013 season.
Tate, the brother of Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Golden Tate, served as the power rusher last season, playing behind Stacy and freshman Brian Kimbrow.
During the 2012 campaign, Tate rushed for 376 yards, which was third on the team. His eight rushing touchdowns were second only to Stacy’s 10. He also caught 12 passes for 116 yards and a score last season.
Tate’s best game in 2012 came in the Commodores’ win over Massachusetts. In that contest, Tate rushed for 81 yards on 15 carries, and he scored a touchdown.
Tate returned to the running back position in 2012, after moving to wide receiver in 2011. During the 2011 season, he caught 22 passes for 187 yards. During that campaign, he did rush three times for 26 yards, including a 23-yard score against Elon.
As a redshirt freshman in 2010, Tate rushed 40 times for 140 yards, and added 25 receiving yards.
If Tate is to get time this year, he must beat out the highly-regarded Kimbrow, who figures to be the featured back. Playing behind Stacy last season, Kimbrow carried the ball 66 times for 413 yards and three touchdowns. He also brings the pedigree, having participated in the U.S. Army All-American game, as well as being named first-team all-state in Tennessee as a senior.
Coach James Franklin has not indicated who the starting running back is for the 2013 season. Tate is hoping to make an impression during the spring that could get him more carries in the fall. Kimbrow has the talent, but Tate has the experience. Expect both to see time as the featured back during the fall.