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3 to know: Sophomores who could make an impact for Toledo football

07/27/2017, 11:00am EDT

Rockets have young players to watch on both sides of the ball

Toledo sophomore running back Art Thompkins averaged 8.1 yards per carry last season for the Rockets. BLADE PHOTO

The University of Toledo football team has plenty of big names on its roster. From Logan Woodside to Cody Thompson to Ja’Wuan Woodley there are proven seniors who should be able to build on already established college careers.

So who are some of the younger players UT fans should know?

Here are three underclassmen to watch this season:

Sophomore RB Art Thompkins, 5-foot-8, 178 pounds: Despite playing behind Kareem Hunt and Terry Swanson, Thompkins showed flashes of brilliance last season. The dynamic back proved that he was an explosive playmaker, averaging 8.1 yards per carry on 29 attempts. More should be expected of Thompkins this year as he complements Terry Swanson.

Sophomore WR Diontae Johnson, 5-foot-11, 172 pounds: Johnson missed all of last season with a leg injury and was able to use a redshirt season to retain sophomore eligibility. Johnson showed promise as a freshman in 2015 with 14 catches for 237 yards and three TDs. He also averaged 22.8 yards on kickoff returns. Look for big things from the skilled sophomore both receiving and in the return game.

Sophomore Safety DeDarallo Blue, 6-foot-0, 195 pounds: Blue was one of four true freshman last season to see playing time and is expected to start at the “Star” position this year. Playing the star position, Blue will rely on his versatility as a run-stopper and as a good coverage defender. Last season, Blue recorded 26 tackles and was a star on special teams. Expect to see Blue making plays all over the field this season.

Other potential young impact players:

Bryce Harris, OL

Chandler Cotterman, OL

Aaron Covington, CB

Nate Childress, DT

Ronnie Jones, Safety

Contact Brian Buckey at or 419-724-6110 or on Twitter @BrianBuckey.

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Tag(s): College  Toledo