29 Pepe Pearson

Pepe Pearson Ohio State
usaUnited States
Euclid, OH
High School
Current Team
Ohio State
1994, 1995, 1996, 1997

Major: Social Work (1996-97), Undecided (1995), Unknown (1994)

Weight: 206 (1996-97), 193 (1995), 175 (1994)

1997 Media Guide: Will be in his second year as the Buckeyes’ starting tailback … ran for 1,443 yards and 17 touchdowns last year … both totals led the team and his yardage figure ranks as the sixth best one-season figure in Ohio State history … finished third in the Big Ten and 11th nationally in rushing yards per game with an average of 124.82 (based on regular-season games only) … has been timed electronically at 4.4 in the forty-yard dash, the best time ever by an OSU back … also has the raw power to run inside … stronger “mentally and physically” than he was a year ago and much more confident.

1996: Carried the ball 299 times (24.9 per game) and averaged an even five yards per carry … his total number of carries is the third most in OSU history and included a career high of 37 at Indiana … rushed for 100 or more yards 10 times last year, including a season and career best 173 at Notre Dame, where he also scored two touchdowns … other top performances included 141 yards vs. Penn State, 165 at Illinois and 111 vs. Arizona State in the Rose Bowl … had a 76-yard run against the Illini and a 62-yard scamper against ASU, the latter coming when the Buckeyes were pinned down on their own three-yard line late in the fourth quarter … scored three touchdowns against both Rice and Pittsburgh … his 165 yards at Illinois put him over 1,000 — making him the 12th OSU back to top that figure … ranks 11th on the all-time Ohio State rushing list with 2,166 yards, but can leap frog into third place by equaling his output of last year … also OSU’s third leading receiver last year with 19 catches … earned second-team all-Big Ten honors last year and should be a candidate for even greater postseason laurels in 1996, including the Doak Walker Award as the nation’s top collegiate running back.

1996 Media Guide: Takes over for Heisman Trophy winner Eddie George at tailback … has big shoes to fill, but is a very talented runner and should maintain the high level of play that has been characteristic of OSU tailbacks in recent years … has added weight since last year and is a solid 206 pounds … combines that size with a dynamite start, breakaway speed and excellent vision … also a fine pass receiver … can run inside or out and gives the Buckeyes an element of speed that they have not had the past three seasons … has been George’s backup the past two years … carried the ball 83 times for 385 yards and three touchdowns last year … Was second to George in rushing and was the only other tailback besides George to score a touchdown … had an impressive four-game stretch between Iowa and Indiana in which he carried the ball 48 times for 277 yards and all three of his TDs … 79 yards on 14 carries against the Hoosiers was his top individual effort … longest run was 24 yards against Iowa … had five pass receptions for 95 yards, including a 44-yard catch-and-run against the Hawkeyes … had an excellent spring and really separated himself from the other tailback candidates … the type of player who will work diligently in the fall to maintain that edge.

1995 Media Guide: Finished last year as the No. 2 tailback behind Eddie George and was the Buckeyes’ second leading rusher with 338 yards on 85 carries … also had two touchdowns, one against Houston and the other vs. Purdue … slashing runner with breakaway speed … took over for the injured George (ankle sprain) late in the first quarter at Penn State and responded with 57 yards on nine carries … top game in terms of yardage was 65 yards against Houston … longest run of the year was a 25-vard jaunt in the Buckeyes’ win over Wisconsin … also caught three passes and had one kickoff return (33 vards) … appeared in 11 games (he did not play against either Washington or Northwestern) … won the No. 2 spot tailback spot midway through the season after a tough battle with another true freshman, Jermon Jackson … good young prospect … has added 15 pounds since last year.

High School: Honorable mention All-America by USA Today, and All-America by Tom Lemmings’ Prep Football Report … a first team all-Ohio selection at running back and the district co-offensive player of the year … a two-time Cleveland Plain Dealer All-Scholastic Team pick … selected to the Detroit Free Press’ Best of the Midwest top 20… rushed for more than 1,500 yards and averaged 7.6 yards a carry as a senior, when Euclid went 11-1, won the Greater Cleveland Conference and advanced to the state playoffs … rushed for over 4,300 yards during his career … top games were 289 yards against Bedford as a sophomore and 263 yards vs. Barberton as a junior … gained 1,527 yards and scored 18 touchdowns as a junior when he was second team all-state … competed in the National AAU Junior Olympics in track as a junior, and placed in two relays at the 1994 state track meet … also played basketball … high school coach was Tom Bane.

Personal: Attended the same high school as former Ohio State back Robert Smith, now with the Minnesota Vikings.



SeasonTeamGGSCompPass AttPass YdsRush AttRush YdsRush AvgRush TDTgtRecRec YdsRec AvgRec TDLngFumLostFRKRKR YdsKR TDPRPR YdsPR TD
1994Ohio State110000853384.02NA3217.00250001330180
1995Ohio State130000833894.73759519.00442014590000
1996Ohio State1212112129914845.017311921811.500320000000
1997Ohio State13NA0001928694.510NA910411.6047NANANA000000