August 30, 2007

Stephens-Howling willing to share the load

The most publicized position since Dave Wannstedt took over as Pitt head coach two years ago, has been the running back position. He has made it his aim to run the ball at Pitt, in addition to stockpiling depth on the offensive and defensive lines. Of those goals, it seems the defensive line is closest to hitting its level of expectation. The running backs are next, thanks to a new addition for 2007, and returning experience.

There are a handful of players who have had the best camps of their careers, including Bill Stull, Darrell Strong, Scott McKillop and Kennard Cox. One player who may have had the best camp, in the eyes of the coaches, has been LaRod Stephens-Howling.

Stephens-Howling has taken the bulk of the carries since committing to the Panthers in 2005, and will continue to get his fair share. While many thought the addition of LeSean McCoy would supplant Stephens-Howling, it has only helped him become an even better running back, as evidenced by his performance in camp. Stephens-Howling is the first one to admit it.

"We will definitely be sharing carries," Stephens-Howling added. "We need that. I need that, and Shady (McCoy) is going to need that. It's going to be a good thing, and it will be a positive thing for the team."

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