Jobi Malary of Portland State had an impressive year for the Vikings in the Big Sky conference. There are a lot of metrics that would indicate the junior running back is ready to play at the FBS level.
The 5-foot-11, 225-pound running back rushed for 676 yards and 12 TD on 103 carries this season, for an average of 6.6 yards per carry and over 67 rush yards per game. That yards per attempt efficiency was not only tops on the team for qualified rushers, but was top 15 in all of FCS for running backs with at least 100 attempts.
Malary is a balanced back who believes he can contribute in all aspects of the game. Malary told The Portal Report, “I want to be a part of an offense that would allow me to be an all down running back. I want to be involved in the pass game as well as the run game and [I want] to block!” It is not hard to understand why Malary wants to be involved in all aspects of the offense. In limited opportunities, Malary earned a 75.4 grade by Pro Football Focus in pass blocking snaps this year. He did not have a reception this year, but was not targeted either. In his career, he has not had a drop and targets have resulted in a catch in 90% of attempts (again, limited opportunities – 9 catches on 10 targets).
His rushing prowess was good enough to earn a 91.3 overall offensive grade by Pro Football Focus (“PFF”), good enough for the second highest graded running back in all of FCS this season. He has shown flashes of speed and big play ability breaking off a 75 yard run in his huge game against Eastern Washington (241 yards and 6 TD) and 56 yards against Cal Poly. He has also shown the ability to be physical and break tackles with 483 yards after contact for an average of 4.64 yards per carry (third best in all of FCS for running backs with at least 100 attempts). Maybe the most critical part of his game is his ball security. The running back did not lose a fumble all year long and only lost one fumble in his career (on 173 carries). This was good enough to earn a fumble grade by PFF of 87.6 this year.
The Gresham, OR native told The Portal Report that he is willing to play anywhere in the country. He clearly excelled in the heavy Run-Pass Option (“RPO”) offensive scheme deployed by Portland State this year, but he is comfortable with any offensive run scheme. The fourth year junior running back is easy to root for as he started his career as a walk on and overcame some injuries early on in his career. Malary quickly went on to earn a scholarship after only ONE game in his freshman year! Malary has received interest from schools at a variety of competition levels – Pitt, Boise State, UTSA, Texas Tech, Wyoming, Butler, and Idaho State.
We will be eagerly waiting to see where the veteran running back will get his opportunity to continue to showcase his skill set.