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The Best Part of B1G 2020: Blake Hayes, Running Back

THE Running Back, y’all

Nebraska really had no idea what was coming

This is an image we’ve all seen before. Hundreds of times for Illinois’s offense, especially during the Blake Hayes era. We all know what’s about to happen. He’s about to launch a 63-yard punt that lands next to the sideline and bounces out, followed by yet another OTE Special Teams POTW award.

That’s not what happened though.

In 2020, Blake Hayes launched 42 punts with an average of 43.8 yards per punt. Untold numbers of those punts landed inside the 20, 10, and even the 5. Still though, not the most impressive thing about his season.

Blake Hayes, Running Back, Illinois Fighting Illini

2 carries, 34, yards, 17 ypc average, 2 fourth down conversions

That’s right. In addition to embarrassing Nebraska with the wide openest fake punt run ever, Hayes did it again.

Dude has some wheels too!

I loved seeing Hayes punt and scouting his stat lines after each week of the season. I can’t wait to do it again in the 2021 season. Until then, I’m going to kick back and marvel at the most efficient running back in the conference embarrassing Nebraska and outrunning Northwestern.


What do you like better?

This poll is closed

  • 25%
    Hayes’s otherworldly punting skills
    (16 votes)
  • 74%
    Hayes’s ability to chew up yardage every time he touches the ball
    (46 votes)
62 votes total Vote Now