September 16, 2014

Scrolling Headlines:

UMass students make an impact -

Monday, September 15, 2014

Apple unveils new smartwatch and larger iPhone 6 -

Monday, September 15, 2014

Fast food strikers right to demand stake in ‘American dream’ -

Monday, September 15, 2014

New Journalism Chair Kathy Roberts Forde finds home at UMass -

Monday, September 15, 2014

UMass men’s soccer shut out by Boston University in rain-soaked matchup -

Monday, September 15, 2014

UMass field hockey gets much needed win on Sunday vs. UMass Lowell -

Monday, September 15, 2014

UMass men’s and women’s cross country opens season with middling finishes -

Monday, September 15, 2014

Dear Chancellor: Fund dilapidated arts classrooms -

Monday, September 15, 2014

UMass to create new renewable energy chair position -

Monday, September 15, 2014

Uber: A better deal for area students -

Monday, September 15, 2014

UMass field hockey loses 2-1 to California on Friday -

Monday, September 15, 2014

University panel brings understanding to the term ‘hooking up’ -

Monday, September 15, 2014

UMass women’s soccer falters at UConn -

Monday, September 15, 2014

Dr. Vijay Prashad speaks at UMass on capitalism and global inequality -

Monday, September 15, 2014

Minutewomen offensive struggles continue in a 2-1 loss vs. California -

Sunday, September 14, 2014

UMass football falls to Vanderbilt 34-31 in crushing fashion -

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Front to Back: Week of Sept. 8, 2014 -

Friday, September 12, 2014

“She was a happy person and she exuded that happiness onto everyone around her” -

Thursday, September 11, 2014

UMass football prepares for Southeastern Conference opponent in first road game of the season. -

Thursday, September 11, 2014

‘Calvary’ laces optimism with incredibly dark comedy -

Thursday, September 11, 2014

After trying freshman season, UMass football’s Lorenzo Woodley excited to play in offensive system that ‘fits my running style’

Cade Belisle/Daily Collegian

Cade Belisle/Daily Collegian

When Lorenzo Woodley looked at the numbers – 6,250 career rushing yards and 58 career touchdowns – he couldn’t help but get excited about learning from his newest running backs coach, former Massachusetts football star Marcel Shipp.

“I don’t know how he did it,” Woodley said with a grin.

Under the tutelage of Shipp and a new offensive system implemented by UMass coach Mark Whipple, Woodley is looking to become a star in his own right after a disappointing freshman year.

The 6-foot, 215-pound back was the prize of Charley Molnar’s 2013 recruiting class and entered his freshman season with incredible expectations. But nagging lower-body injuries limited him to just 314 yards and two touchdowns on 84 carries.

In the midst of his first spring camp, Woodley is excited for a new start. He used his freshman year to “get all the jitters out” and has spent the offseason in the weight room to physically prepare himself for his sophomore season.

Most importantly, he’s finally feeling healthy.

“I feel like my injury has recovered tremendously since the season ended, but I’m still trying to get back to where I was before my injury,” Woodley said.

Despite missing four games and taking limited snaps, the Miami native said there was plenty to learn from his trying freshman season in terms of preparation, staying healthy and his overall football knowledge that he can apply both in practice and on Aug. 30 in the Minutemen’s season opener against Boston College.

“I’m gonna be a lot smarter going into the season learning how to read defenses, offensive schemes, learning how to read my blocks and physically being bigger, stronger and faster from all the winter workouts and the conditioning in the summer,” Woodley said. “I think I’ll be way more prepared than I was last year.”

Woodley may also be the biggest beneficiary of the Minutemen’s offseason coaching change.

After spending last season in Charley Molnar’s spread offense, Woodley is back in a pro-style offense under Whipple that is similar to the system he ran at Christopher Columbus High School, something he said he’s more comfortable in.

“I feel like this new offensive scheme fits my running style,” he said. “This is the type of scheme I played in high school and the type of scheme I’ve been used to running my entire time playing football. I feel like this is the type of offense I belong in, and I’m very excited to see what I can do this year.”

Woodley is one of six running backs expected to be on the UMass roster come training camp, and with the return of Jordan Broadnax and another highly touted incoming freshman in J.T. Blyden, the competition for the starting job will be intensified come August.

If Woodley can be the player that ran for 163 yards on 38 carries in his first-career start Nov. 2 against Northern Illinois, his spot atop the depth chart may be secured.

Whether or not he will be that go-to player out of the backfield next year is unclear, but he believes he’s ready for that kind of responsibility.

“I can be a workhorse and I can take over a game and wear down defenses,” Woodley said. “I just feel like 25 carries a game, that would be great. I feel like I can be that type of back that can carry the workload.”

It would make quite impression on his new coaches as well.

Nick Canelas can be reached at ncanelas@umass.edu and followed on Twitter @NickCanelas.

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