Tulane opens fall camp tasked with filling void left by Tyjae Spears

Willie Fritz believes eventually a few players will start to separate themselves.
As Tulane tries to stay on top of the conference, they have to do so without Tyjae Spears. And the team admits he's not easily replaceable.
Updated: Aug. 2, 2023 at 10:30 PM CDT
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - The reigning AAC Offensive Player of the Year is now in the NFL.

Tulane’s Tyjae Spears finished with over 1500 rushing yards and 19 touchdowns his last season in New Orleans.

Now as Tulane tries to stay on top of the conference, they have to do so without Spears.

And the team admits he’s not easily replaceable.

“Well it’s hard,” head coach Willie Fritz says. “He’s a great player, you know. We expect him to play a lot for the Tennessee Titans this year, so he’s a pretty good player. I have a scout who’s a buddy of mine who’s there right now. He called me just the other day and told me how impressed they were with his work ethic and explosiveness and that he’s better than what they anticipated. I think that he’s a great player. So it’s hard to replace a great player.”

So who will the Green Wave be able to rely on in the running back room this year?

Fritz says they’ll play a lot of running backs early, and he believes eventually a few guys will start to separate themselves.

“We gotta find out who those people are,” Fritz says. “We got Shaadie Clayton and you know Arnold (Barnes III), who we talked about, and Iverson Celestine and Shedro Louis who’s a new guy, Makhi Hughes who has done some things. I’m probably forgetting somebody. We’ve got some great talented backs. We’ll see exactly who will be playing the majority of snaps. Someone is gonna come out. Someone’s gonna be the bell cow. Probably gonna take us a few weeks to figure out who that is.”

Aside from Spears last year, Iverson Celestine and Shaadie Clayton-Johnson were the second and third most productive running backs.

They combined for nearly 800 yards and a touchdown.

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