When it comes to Oklahoma high school running backs in 2019, the majority of the publicity has gone to Sevion Morrison of Tulsa Edison and Isaiah Jacobs of Owasso. Both are Division I-caliber players, but most high school football fans would be surprised to learn that neither player currently leads Green Country in rushing this season.
That distinction belongs to Muskogee’s Jimmie Coleman. Coleman has rushed for nearly 1,400 yards through seven games for the 6-1 Roughers, including three straight 200-yard performances.
“You know, it’s become so expected that you kind of overlook how special he really is,” said Rougher head coach Rafe Watkins. “He’s not the biggest guy in world. He’s not the fastest. But he’s got great vision and great feet. He never really goes down with the first hit. He’s an incredible young man.”
Coleman burst onto the scene last year after rushing for nearly 1,500 years and 20 touchdowns for Muskogee as a junior. He has set his sights on even bigger and better things for his senior campaign.
“I went to a few camps last summer, but mostly I stayed in the weight room,” remarked Coleman. “I’ve gotten bigger, faster and more aggressive.”
At 5-7 and 160 pounds, Coleman isn’t the type of back that runs over linebackers on a regular basis. He knows a lot of his success is due to the guys up front blocking for him.
“Really, it all goes out to our offensive line,” said Coleman. “Our line has gotten a lot better,” said Coleman. “They have more experience and they’re more confident in themselves than they were last year.”
Coleman likes to compare his running style to former Oklahoma State and current Kansas City Chief Tyreek Hill. The running back and return specialist has been offered by Fort Hays State in Kansas and is open to going the junior college route if it means a shot at a Division I scholarship.
“He’s got a couple of offers from Division II schools, but wherever he ends up going they’re going to get a steal because he is a great, great back,” said Watkins.
Muskogee isn’t a one-man team, however. The Roughers have a much-improved defense and are allowing just 12 points per game. Junior safety Ty Williams, who’s also the starting quarterback, leads the state lead with seven interceptions.
“We’ve got a good defensive front,” commented Watkins. “Our linebackers have been solid, even though those are both new linebackers this year.”
Coleman and the rest of the Muskogee Roughers will be featured live on YurView Cox Channel 3 on Friday, November 1st at 7pm when they battle Bartlesville in a key district showdown. This Ford Game of the Week will also be streamed live on Yurview.com.