Soso Jamobo recruit scouting report: Special running back

Soso Jamabo - Student Sports

Jamobo figures to battle all year for the honor of top 2015 back. Get to know his skill set.

Don't let the name fool you. There is nothing so-so about Jamobo's skill set -- the Plano (Texas) Plano West product is already one of 2015's most coveted running back recruits, bringing together a terrifying blend of size and reported 4.55 speed in his 6'3, 215-pound frame.

According to the February 2014 247Sports Composite, the four-star Jamobo trails only Berea (Kent.) Madison Southern's Damien Harris and Fort Lauderdale (Fla.) St. Thomas Aquinas' Jordan Scarlett in the running back rankings, making him third among all players at that position group. To this, Jamobo adds another impressive rank -- 8th among all Texas players.

All of this attention has earned Jamobo -- the 51st-ranked player in the country as of February 2014 -- nine early offers, from high-profile programs like Baylor, Oklahoma, Oregon, Ohio State, Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Notre Dame, and Michigan.

The obvious question looking at Jamabo is whether he will be able to stay at the running back position in college, as he's well on the tall side of the spectrum for a running back, prompting ESPN to classify him as an athlete. Adding to that belief is the fact that his long, lean frame appears capable of holding 30 more pounds, a weight that would put him into the range of defensive ends.

To some extent then, his ability to stay at running back in college will depend on where his body takes him.

There are certainly a handful of skills he possesses that would allow him to stay at the position. Jamabo has a leaping slide cut that allows him to break diving arm tackles in the open field, turning medium-length gains into monster plays. He also has nice lateral movement that allows him to quickly bounce runs outside the tackles, where he seems the most comfortable. Finally, a jump cut gives him some elusiveness in the backfield and is impressive for his size.

A lack of ideal pad level may be part of what leads Jamabo to bounce a lot of runs outside when there aren't gaping holes on the interior -- like most tall running backs, he has trouble getting low and behind his pads, which can make it difficult to break through the line of scrimmage in traffic.

There are also questions about his ability to finish runs with leg drive in short-yardage situations.

The final concern is that while his burst is adequate, it appears that it often takes him several strides to reach top speed.

There's enough on film to believe that Jamabo can be an effective college running back and no defensive film to entice evaluators to look at him as a defensive player, so it may be that his shortcomings as a tall running back can be overcome by his obvious skills there, skills that are significant enough to make him one of the top prospects in the country.

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