Kamryn Pettway's wait is almost over to play football at Auburn
By Charles Goldberg
AUBURN, Ala. ― Shon Coleman, being an offensive tackle and all, knows a little something about big-time blocks, so the day he heard a loud collision behind him in practice, he wondered.
"I had to look over my shoulder, like 'what was that?'"
What was that was Kamryn Pettway, a running back when he signed and now a player who has bought-in as an H-back. His main assignment now will be to block, and that's what he's doing in practice.
"He's a hard-nosed hitter. He'll go in there and go for the knockout punch," Coleman said. "That's a guy I like. He's very aggressive."
Meet Kamryn Pettway, who rushed for 1,400 yards his senior season at Prattville High School, but now is looking up would-be tacklers to knock down and will be looking for an occasional pass to catch.
"I enjoy hitting people a lot. I've always been physical, a big person," Pettway says.
He says he's OK with others running with the football, saying he's willing to do "whatever I need to do to help the team succeed.”
Pettway checks in at 6-foot, 242 pounds and is competing with freshman Chandler Cox for H-back duties that will include blocking for quarterback Jeremy Johnson and the running backs, and ― who knows? ― occasionally sneaking out for a pass. Pettway says he and Cox are taking turns with the first team in practice.
"During the spring, my head was spinning a little bit but I feel very comfortable right now," Pettway said. "I'm very strong back there. I feel like I can make a big impact at H-back."
He's being tested in practice by Auburn's rejuvenated defense.
"The most difficult part about it is just the good defensive players I go against every day in practice. I just have to get my technique down," he said.
Pettway said last year's redshirt season was an eye-opener.
"It helped me a lot. It just humbled me a lot."
Pettway still has a season more experience than newcomer Cox. Pettway says that only goes so far.
"I don't feel like I have much of an advantage over him because he is also a good player. We just work and push each other every day," he said.
Coach Gus Malzahn describes Pettway and Cox as "physical guys."
"They are both smart guys. They are both very versatile. They can block. They can catch the ball, they can catch the ball, block in space and can protect, which I think is very, very big."
Charles Goldberg is a Senior Writer at AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter: Follow @AUGoldMine