Going into the 2018 season there was a hole in the Oregon State Beavers’ backfield left by Ryan Nall, aka the Wrecking Nall. It looked like there would be a substantial fall-off in the backfield as the Beavs reloaded. The hope laid with Artavis Pierce, who returned with a promising start against Ohio State after being clouded by a very crowded backfield in 2017. Unfortunately, AP went down against Southern Utah and a hush fell over Reser stadium.
When everything seemed to be burning down in front of Beaver Nation as they prepared for another disappointing season, a freshman rose from the ashes. Out trotted Jermar Jefferson: a true freshman that had yet to show Beaver Nation what he could do. It did not take Jermar long as he burst onto the scene against Southern Utah. As he weaved through the defense and tore apart Southern Utah for 238 yards and four touchdowns, he had already won over the Beaver faithful.
Jermar took the nation by storm his freshman season as he padded the stat book. He took over the starting job and did not look back. He finished the season with 239 rushes for 1380 yards along with 12 touchdowns. He led all FBS freshmen in rushing yards. The next closest freshman tallied 1137 yards and only 10 touchdowns. Jefferson finished sixth in all of D1 for rushing yards and third in the Pac-12.
Jefferson has given Oregon State hope for upcoming seasons knowing there is a powerhouse in the backfield. He set the single season freshman rushing record at Oregon State this year. He also put up the sixth-most rushing total in a single season in OSU history. Jefferson has set himself up to become one of the greatest rushers to ever come through Corvallis when it is all said and done.
Jefferson put up some very impressive numbers this season and tallied two four-touchdown games: one against Southern Utah and the other against Washington State. He’s the only Oregon State running back to have two four-touchdown games in the same season. It should also be noted that four rushing touchdowns is tied for the most in a single game in school history. His best rushing game came against Arizona State, where he amassed 254 yards on 31 carries, with two touchdowns. Those 254 rushing yards are the most an OSU running back has ever totaled against Arizona State and the second-most in any single game in OSU history.
Jermar had six games with over 100 yards and two games with over 200 rushing yards. He was vital to the success of the Oregon State offense this year and put the entire nation on notice.
Oregon State got an absolute gem in their backfield and he should only increase his numbers as he gets more comfortable in this offense and the Beavers learn to utilize him even more. Safe to say, the post-Nall back-field is looking very bright, spearheaded by one Jermar Jefferson.