Shaq Thompson was a running back to behold at Grant High School, the best big-back sprinter we’ve seen in 25 years on the local beat.
He could gain punishing yards up the middle, but he was especially difficult to corner as a lateral runner, blessed with cutback ability that left many defenders tackling shadows.
Is the Shaq run attack back?
Now preparing for his junior season at linebacker at Washington, the 6-foot-2, 231-pound Thompson has offered new coach Chris Petersen a chance to turbo-boost the Huskies’ ground game. Thompson said he lives to play, and Petersen – who played quarterback at Yuba City High School, Sacramento City College and UC Davis – said he is always open to options.
That’s why Petersen had Thompson take handoffs at spring drills in Seattle. While coaching at Boise State, Petersen saw film of Thompson running the ball at Grant and is aware of his state-meet track history. .
“I miss running the ball, but I’m a linebacker, and that’s my focus,” Thompson said. “But it would be fun. I’ll do anything.”
Washington defensive back Marcus Peters is already a fan of Thompson the running back. “He’s a monster, man,” Peters told Seattle reporters after a practice. “It’s going to be real unique to see him run the ball.”Jon Osterhout Lou Baiz Josh Crabtree