Troy Calhoun isn’t seeking an alliteratively named sensation at tailback. Just someone to provide a little boost.
It appears that Kade Remsberg is next in line to audition for that opportunity for Air Force.
“You’re not going to say this guy’s got to become the Kansas Comet,” Calhoun said.
Hall of Famer Gale Sayers was the original Comet, a nickname earned at the University of Kansas in Remsberg’s home state. So that one’s taken. Kade the Komet would still be up for grabs. Or perhaps Remsberg the Rocket?
Monikers can wait. First, the Falcons need to see what they have in this fleet-footed sophomore who has taken the bulk of first-team repetitions coming out of the bye week in preparation for Saturday night’s Mountain West opener at Utah State.
All of the other tailbacks are still there. Joseph Saucier, who started the first two games, keeps battling issues. An injury knocked him out against Florida Atlantic. He returned to the practice field, then fell ill with food poisoning. He returned to the practice field on Tuesday. Nolan Eriksen is still around, too, after rushing for 44 yards and a touchdown when Saucier left the last game.
Neither has done anything to lose the position. Saucier has averaged 6.8 yards on 11 carries. Eriksen is at 5.6 yards per carry on 12 attempts.
But at a difference-making position, no one has truly made a difference. So the carousel continues to turn.
“We need some big plays,” running backs coach Ben Miller said. “There’s too many times we’re catching the ball on the perimeter with a bunch of green grass and it’s gains of 4 or 5. We need bigger gains. That’s what we need, that’s what we’re emphasizing each day in practice.”
Remsberg was a state champion in the 100- and 200-meter dashes in high school, with a personal record of 10.64 in the 100 and 21.69 in the 200. As a general frame of reference, the high school bests for former Falcons star Tim McVey were 11.52 in the 100 and 22.99 in the 200, according to athletic.net.
Those are the very plays that the team has lacked since McVey became slowed by injuries last year as a senior.
Calhoun believes the big plays will come if Air Force is first able to establish longer drives. He likens first downs to placing runners on base in baseball. Even still, it helps to have a big hitter in the lineup to drive them home. Remsberg, who Calhoun says has “good top-end speed,” could be that guy.
That was the impression he left on Miller when he came to an Air Force camp prior to his senior year.
“He was a little skinny,” Miller said of the Newton, Kan., native. “But nobody could touch him.”
Per team policy that permits only juniors and seniors to speak with media at times other than immediately following games, Remsberg was not made available to The Gazette.
Remberg isn’t the last hope at the position. Senior Malik Miller still hasn’t received an extended look, and the sophomore class includes Josh Stoner and Ben Peterson.
So if there’s not a Remsberg Renaissance for the offense, expect the Kade Karousel to turn again.