The Oklahoma Sooners boast one of the few programs that can make a legitimate claim as ‘RBU’. With numerous star players over the decades to choose from, OU has built a reputation as a factory for producing top-flight backs. This time around, it’s Rhamondre Stevenson’s turn to carry that mantle from the collegiate playing field to the pros. Next stop: the 2021 NFL Draft.
Rhamondre Stevenson’s story
Rhamondre Stevenson, originally from Las Vegas, Nevada, made his way to Norman in 2019 after playing two years of JUCO ball at Cerritos College in California. As a recruit, he held scholarship offers from the likes of USC, Texas and Kansas State among others, but he ultimately made the wise decision to suit up for Lincoln Riley and the Sooners.
Compared to most other running backs in this year’s draft class, Stevenson likely has less experience at the Division I level, but what he does have is certainly impressive. In a limited reserve role in 2019, he showcased an ability to routinely maintain his balance, and with his size, he’s definitely not afraid of contact. Going into the postseason, he had racked up 515 rushing yards and six touchdowns on 64 carries. He also added 10 receptions for 87 receiving yards.
TOUCHDOWN— Sooner Gridiron (@soonergridiron) October 5, 2019
Rhamondre Stevenson ➡️ The House.#OUDNA | #BoomerSooner pic.twitter.com/p2xAjbVQpS
Unfortunately for Stevenson, he was sidelined — along with Ronnie Perkins and Trejan Bridges — from playing in the CFP Peach Bowl Semifinal on account of a suspension for a positive NCAA drug test. To make matters all the more challenging, the penalty would extend into the 2020 season.
After Oklahoma had played its first five games of the condensed 2020 campaign, Stevenson was finally allowed to rejoin his teammates by contributing on the field. Immediately, his impact was felt in a big way. Down the stretch, he appeared in each of OU’s final six games, and along the way he amassed 665 yards and seven TDs on 101 carries. He also recorded 18 catches for 211 receiving yards.
The cherry on top of Stevenson’s collegiate career came in the Cotton Bowl Classic against the Florida Gators, where the veteran rusher bullied his way to 186 yards and a score on 18 carries. By game’s end, he was named Offensive MVP for his incredible performance.
Congratulations to our 85th Classic MVPs!— Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic (@CottonBowlGame) December 31, 2020
Defensive: @trenorwood_3 @OU_Football // #LikeNoOther pic.twitter.com/jrmr6Ide7g
Following the Cotton Bowl, Stevenson began his training toward what he hopes will be a long and prosperous professional career. He took part in the Reese’s Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama, then followed up that appearance with a solid showing at OU’s Pro Day.
Pro Day Results
Throughout his collegiate career, one of Stevenson’s defining physical characteristics was his above average size as a running back. However, since the end of the 2020 season, he’s dropped around 15 pounds in an effort to improve his overall speed and agility. Judging from his Senior Bowl and Pro Day performances, it seems like he was rather successful in doing just that, all while maintaining his natural strength and physicality.
Height/Weight — 5’11 5/8”, 231 pounds
Broad jump — 9’4”
Vertical — 31.5”
40-yard dash — 4.63 seconds
20-yard shuttle — 4.47 seconds
3-cone — 7.02 seconds
Bench press — 15 reps
When it comes to Stevenson’s draft potential, NFL analyst Lance Zierlein envisions him to go early on Day Three, such as the fourth round, while Pro Football Network’s Ian Cummings also projects the back to be a Saturday selection, falling likely to the fifth or sixth round.
Follow Crimson & Cream Machine on Twitter!