Six carries is all Washington's Shaq Thompson and UCLA's Myles Jack have between them as two of the nation's most prominent two-way players, both primarily linebackers working to break into a running back rotation. But if their coaches aren't just posturing to make their teams harder to prepare for, both players should be seeing more two-way action soon.
Washington coach Chris Petersen indicated at his Monday news conference that Thompson caught the coaching staff's eye Saturday with a 57-yard touchdown run among just three carries. Petersen said he would "play it by ear" when considering Thompson's evolving role, according to The Seattle Times' Chris Jude, and that at running back, "He's as productive as all get-out, for sure." Earlier Monday, UCLA coach Jim Mora expressed an interest in expanding Jack's two-way role. Like Thompson, Jack scored a touchdown among only three carries Saturday against Memphis, though Jack's was from just four yards out.
Jack was named both Offensive and Defensive Freshman of the Year in the Pac-12 last season as a starting linebacker who also got 38 carries at running back, most of them late in the season. Meanwhile, NFL scouts have been abuzz about Thompson, according to NFL Media analyst Bucky Brooks. As a junior, Thompson could enter the 2015 NFL Draft if he declares early eligibility, but Jack can't enter the draft until 2016 at the earliest.
Jack and UCLA will face Texas Saturday, while Washington plays host to Illinois. So how about the Jack and Thompson Show coming to the same venue, perhaps having occasion to tackle one another? Won't happen in the regular season, as the Bruins and Huskies aren't scheduled to play, but they could potentially meet in the Pac-12 Championship Game.