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#NVprepsfb top running back countdown — No. 3

Virgin Valley’s Jayden Perkins comes in at No. 3 on our #NVprepsfb list of Southern Nevada’s top five running backs.

To create the list, we spoke with coaches from the Sunrise and Sunset Regions in both Class 4A and 3A. A couple of the base questions were: “Who is the top high school running back today?” and “Who would you pick to start a team?”

Then we grabbed the statistics from last season, looked at the player’s collective rankings on recruiting websites and used our own judgment to fill holes.

This resulted in the #NVprepsfb running back rank. The list is based off high school productivity and not college or professional potential. Stay tuned for our wide receiver/pass catcher and defensive player lists that will be unveiled each week until the end of July.

#NVprepsfb Running Back Rank: Virgin Valley’s Jayden Perkins No. 3

Class

2018

Vitals

6 feet, 2 inches; 185 pounds

Honors

All-state honorable mention (2016), Class 3A Sunrise League Player of the Year (2016); Class 3A first-team all-state (2016), first-team All-Southern Region (2016)

Recruiting

Perkins has no formal scholarship offers, but has received interest from Brigham Young, UNLV and Utah, according to Scout.com.

Last Year’s Stats

Perkins rushed for 1,369 yards and 16 touchdowns on 276 attempts last season to lead the Bulldogs to a Class 3A Sunrise League title. He also had 113 yards receiving and a score on nine catches and was a standout linebacker for Virgin Valley.

What they are saying?

— “You knew he was going to get the ball on offense, and he was their best player on defense,” one Sunset Region football coach said. “He never got tired, never stopped playing, and played every down like it was the very first play of the game. He got after it. I was very impressed. For a small-town kid, you kind of have to expect that. I want to say something bad about him, but the kid is good. I don’t know if he’ll play Division I football, but he could definitely play at a small school and be productive.”

— “He’s definitely a physical, strong kid,” one Sunrise Region football coach said. “He’s probably got a chance to be our league’s MVP again. Right now, he’s probably the best player (in Class 3A).”

— “Very powerful and durable,” one Sunset Region football coach said. “He’s the kind of kid that runs 40 times a game. He basically won them that (Sunrise) division last year, which is a big deal. They put a lot of weight on his shoulders. He’s their workouse. I can see him playing Division II somewhere. He just doesn’t have that breakaway, elite speed that they’re looking for.”

— “He’s a dude,” one Sunrise Region football coach said. “He’s one of the best players in our league coming back. From what I understand, he’s put on 10 or 15 pounds and should be a real handful for everybody.”

— “Stud kid,” one Sunrise Region football coach said. “He’s one of those kids that has everything.”

— —

#NVprepsfb Running Back Rank: Del Sol’s Taariq Flowers No. 4

Class

2018

Vitals

5 feet, 9 inches; 185 pounds

Honors

All-state honorable mention (2016); second-team All-Southern Region (2016); first-team All-Sunrise Region (2016)

Recruiting

N/A

Last Year’s Stats

Flowers rushed for 1,282 yards and 10 touchdowns on 178 attempts (7.2 yards per carry) last season to lead the Dragons to their first playoff appearance since 2010. In a 39-7 road win over Boulder City, he ran for 290 yards and three touchdowns on 19 carries.

What they are saying?

— “He’s shifty, strong, very talented,” one Sunset Region football coach said. “I’d take the Flowers kid over (Virgin Valley’s Jayden Perkins). He has top speed and he’s very elusive.”

— “He’s good,” one Sunrise Region football coach said. “I saw him in a passing league and I was like, ‘Damn, who is that kid?”

— “He was pretty good,” one Sunrise Region football coach said. “For them, it all depends on what they have up front.”

— “He was one last year where you watch film and game plan,” one Sunrise Region football coach said. “And he was a hurt a couple games. You’re like ‘Man how did they not beat this team?’ Then you look and see (that) he was out and you go, ‘Oh, different team.’ He’s going to be a stud.”

— “I definitely feel like in the (Class) 3A, he’s one of the better returners, for sure.”

— —

#NVprepsfb Running Back Rank: Bishop Gorman’s Amod Cianelli No. 5

Class

2019

Vitals

5 feet, 10 inches; 185 pounds

Honors

N/A

Recruiting

N/A

Last Year’s Stats

Cianelli rushed for 793 yards and five touchdowns on 105 carries (7.6 yards per carry) as a backup to California signee Biaggio Ali Walsh last season to help Gorman win its eight consecutive state title and third straight mythical national championship. He ran for 116 yards and a touchdown in a highly-publicized matchup with St. John Bosco (California), and added 157 yards on 23 carries versus Kahuku (Hawaii) last season.

What they are saying?

— “We got a taste of him after Biaggio (Ali Walsh) got his 175 (yards) against us,” one Sunset Region football coach said. “He’s smaller in stature, but more of a powerful runner than Ali Walsh. I don’t feel like he has that breakaway speed, but he can run through a few guys. If he gets loose, he can take it, and with (Kirby Bennett) gone, he’ll get his chance.”

— “He was impressive,” one Sunrise Region football coach said. “He got some good playing time last year when Biaggio (Ali Walsh) was banged up. He’s athletic and can break tackles when he has to. It just seems like they keep reloading.”

— “Everybody got to see a glimpse of what he was capable of,” one Sunset Region football coach said. “I don’t see (Bishop Gorman) skipping a beat.”

To get involved in the discussion, use #NVprepsfb on Twitter. You also can follow along @nevadapreps.

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