Kansas State football recruiting is on a heater. After a slow start that had some people in recruiting panic mode (never panic in April), Coach Klieman and company have secured four verbal commitments in the last few weeks.
Deuce Vaughn, a 3-star, 5’6, 165 pound running back out of Cedar Ridge High School in Round Rock, Texas gave the Wildcats a verbal commitment last week. Vaughn Committed to K-State over offers from Arkansas, Army, Air Force, and Missouri.
Vaughn gives Kansas State a little something different out of the backfield than any of the backs coming in with the 2019 class.
It would be easy to pigeon hole Vaughn as a 3rd-down “scat” back, but Wildcat fans know better. You need only look to the Ring of Honor to see the patron saint of diminutive, workhorse running backs, Darren Sproles.
Don’t misunderstand me, I’m not saying that Vaughn is the second coming of Sproles. The Klieman offense, and college football in general, trends more towards running back by committee these days. I do see Vaughn as a guy with a wider skill than just catching swing passes out of the backfield on third down. He reads blocks well out of the backfield, and is adept at exploiting small cracks in the defensive line to get to the second level.
While it’s not Vaughn’s only skill, he can catch the ball out of the backfield. I anticipate him being put in motion out of the backfield to test a defense. If you get him lined up in the slot one on one with a linebacker, it’s all over. I can see him running the option route to death. I can also see his utility as a jet sweep option. He’s a matchup nightmare for any team that wants to stay in their bast 4-3 defense.
Based on their recruiting, it appears that the new staff is interested in injecting speed and quickness into the offense. Vaughn has speed and quickness to burn.
This is another under valued pick up for the new staff. The only thing that is suppressing Vaughn’s recruiting is his size. What other teams see as a flaw, can be a feature in the new Kansas State offense that thrives on shifts on creating mismatches in both the running and passing game. When Vaughn lines up as a tailback, there is not guarantee he’s still going to be lined up as a tailback when the ball is snapped. At the same time, if the defense is not prepared for him to take the ball out of the traditional tailback position, he’ll be 30 yards down the field before they get off their blocks. Much like fellow 2020 recruit Christian Moore, Vaughn is a great value pick up for what Kansas State wants to do on offense.