3 problematic Mountaineers players for Texas football

Dante Stills, Texas football Mandatory Credit: Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports
Dante Stills, Texas football Mandatory Credit: Ben Queen-USA TODAY Sports /
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CJ Donaldson, RB

Turning the attention to the West Virginia ground game, it’s important to note the threat that the top two running backs could pose to the Texas defense. The speedy fourth-year sophomore Tony Mathis and the breakout freshman CJ Donaldson form a pretty impressive running back duo for the Mountaineers that made a real impact on this team in the first four games of the season.

Mathis picked up where he left off at the conclusion of last season as he’s registered 272 rushing yards on 58 carries (4.7 yards per carry), with two rushing scores.

But the most productive running back for West Virginia so far this season is Donaldson. The boulder of a running back at 6-foot-2 and 240-pounds, Donaldson is getting ready to try and run over the players along the Texas defensive front this weekend.

Make no mistakes, Donaldson is a load to bring down in the trenches. He’s a downhill runner that is still shifty enough to make some guys miss in the open field.

He ranks in the top five in the Big 12 among running backs this season, with a dozen missed tackles forced on run plays. Even more impressive is the fact that he leads the Big 12 in yards after contact per carry (at 5.35).

West Virginia won’t be afraid to run Donaldson right up the gut. Nearly 58 percent of his carries so far this season have come between the A and B gaps.

Texas will need to be ready for some physical plays up the middle with Donaldson on pace for at least 20 carries this weekend, if the pace from West Virginia’s win over Virginia Tech keeps in Week 5.