The word on Leonard Fournette

Advocate file photo by BRYAN TUCK. -- St. Augustine's Leonard Fournette moves the ball against St. Thomas More during the playoffs last season.
Advocate file photo by BRYAN TUCK. -- St. Augustine's Leonard Fournette moves the ball against St. Thomas More during the playoffs last season.

By Ted lewis

tlewis@theadvocate.com

“There is not much Fournette does not do at a very high level. He is a running back with a great blend of power and speed. He can run with force, but he can also make a defender miss in the open field. He does a great job of setting up defenders, he hits the hole quickly and he is very good at getting those yards after contact. Most look at Fournette and they may question his quickness and agility, but don’t.”

Chad Simmons, Scout

“Leonard Fournette is a big, physical downhill runner with great vision and surprising cutting ability. He can plant and re-direct very well for a big man, and he is hard to make solid contact with despite being a big target. When in traffic, he can lower his head and pound forward for hard yards, but what really stands out are his quick and light feet for a big man. He is also a solid pass catcher and is a three-down back at 225 pounds. He has a fullback build with the quickness and agility of a tailback.”

Mike Farrell, Rivals.com

“The thing about Leonard is that he has exceptional speed for his size. He sees the hole and he explodes through it. That makes him very difficult to get down because once he gets moving he’s very difficult to tackle. He’s one of those backs that comes along very rarely. We beat St. Aug last year with a great collective team effort. But he’s the kind of player you don’t necessarily look forward to playing.”

Barry Wilson, Holy Cross coach

“What makes Leonard great first of all is, just like Marshall Faulk, he has great work habits. He weighed 220 pounds as a freshman and could have just blown up, but you’ve seen him stay in shape and increase his speed every year running track. He’s also got a great attitude, especially for a kid with his talent. You don’t see many like him.”

WAYNE REESE, McDonogh 35 coach

“Leonard contradicts the modern running back in that he’s a three-headed monster. He can run between the tackles, can go out and catch passes and can be a power runner in short-yardage situations. He’s also still going through the maturation process physically and mentally. He’s just going to continue to get better.

CYRIL CRUTCHFIELD, St. Augustine coach

“Who’s the most coveted prospect that’s still available? It’s an easy choice. Leonard Fournette is the No. 1 overall player. That’s a big statement for us, because we could have picked a cornerback, or maybe a defensive end or an offensive tackle. To say that a running back is our top guy speaks volumes about just how impactful we think Leonard Fournette is going to be and just how much of a difference maker we feel he will be throughout the course of his college career.”

Tom Luginbill, ESPN

Ted Lewis