Scrolling Headlines:

UMass women’s basketball handles Duquesne at home -

January 16, 2017

UMass men’s basketball’s late comeback falls short after blowing 15-point first-half lead -

January 15, 2017

UMass hockey outlasted at home against No. 6 UMass Lowell -

January 14, 2017

Hailey Leidel hits second buzzer beater of the season to give UMass women’s basketball win over Davidson -

January 13, 2017

UMass football hosts Maine at Fenway Park in 2017 -

January 12, 2017

UMass men’s basketball snaps losing streak and upsets Dayton Wednesday night at Mullins Center -

January 11, 2017

UMass women’s track and field takes second at Dartmouth Relays -

January 10, 2017

UMass hockey falls to No. 5 Boston University at Frozen Fenway -

January 8, 2017

UMass professor to make third appearance on ‘Jeopardy!’ -

January 8, 2017

UMass women’s basketball suffers brutal loss on road against Saint Joseph’s -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops thirds straight, falls to VCU 81-64 -

January 7, 2017

UMass men’s basketball drops tightly-contested conference matchup against George Mason Wednesday night -

January 4, 2017

Late-game defense preserves UMass women’s basketball’s win against rival Rhode Island -

January 4, 2017

AIC shuts out UMass hockey 3-0 at Mullins Center -

January 4, 2017

UMass professor to appear as contestant on ‘Jeopardy!’ Thursday night -

January 4, 2017

Penalties plague UMass hockey in Mariucci Classic championship game -

January 2, 2017

UMass men’s basketball falls in A-10 opener to St. Bonaventure and its veteran backcourt -

December 30, 2016

UMass woman’s basketball ends FIU Holiday Classic with 65-47 loss to Drexel -

December 29, 2016

UMass men’s basketball finishes non-conference schedule strong with win over Georgia State -

December 28, 2016

Brett Boeing joins UMass hockey for second half of season -

December 28, 2016

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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