College Football Recruiting: Arizona Wildcats Add Speedy Running Back in 2014

By Tyler Brett
Mark J. Rebilas – USA TODAY Sports

Rich Rodriguez proved his spread offense would translate to the desert when he took over the Arizona Wildcats and produced one of the more explosive offenses in the Pac 12. One of the biggest benefactors in 2012 was running back Ka’Deem Carey who broke out in a major way and ended up leading the country in rushing last season. That success has caught the eye of other playmakers, apparently, as Arizona has secured the commitment of four-star running back Jonathan Haden.

The Washington, D.C., native had offers from all over the country, including programs like the Kentucky Wildcats, Ohio State Buckeyes, North Carolina Tar Heels, Tennessee Volunteers and West Virginia Mountaineers, just to name a few. Instead, he decided to come to the other side of the country to add his talents to Rodriguez’s explosive offensive scheme. Exactly what role he will play, however, is still up in the air.

At just 5-foot-8, 185 pounds, Haden is a little on the small side to handle the load as an every-down running back. His elusive ability in space and excellent hands, however, make him a playmaker that can’t be ignored. With his speed and open-field ability, Haden could make the transition to a slot receiver/running back hybrid a la Tavon Austin from West Virginia.

Rodriguez needs playmakers to make his offense run in the desert. Arizona could be getting their next great athlete in Haden in the 2014 class and continue the excellent start Rodriguez started in 2012. Will he be the next great offensive weapon to come out of a Rich-Rod offense?

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