Texas Football Recruiting: 5-Star Rueben Owens Has Some Barry Sanders in His Game

Rueben Owens out of El Campo, Texas, believes his game can be summed up as a combination of four of the greatest running backs ever to grace the NFL gridiron. Considering his 5-star status and an offer list that includes the likes of Alabama, Texas, Georgia, Texas A&M, and USC among others, he appears to be well on his way toward football greatness.

Owens recently caught up with Sportscasting to discuss how things are going for him on the recruiting trail and to break down his incredible potential as a college running back.

5-star RB Rueben Owens has scary good potential

He’s not the biggest player on the field at 5-foot-11, 190-pounds, but he’s certainly the most explosive. Owens, ranked as the No. 1 running back in the nation, according to 247Sports, projects to be a game-changer and the type of player that college defensive coordinators will have to game-plan for.

He has the straight-line speed that allows him to hit the hole hard and get into the second level in the blink of an eye. He’ll simply be able to out-run most defenders to the point of the attack and once he’s in open space it’s game over. When he is in traffic, though, Owens displays”wiggle” and the ability to cut and use his vision to create new running lanes. He’s never going to be an easy tackle because he’s hard to get his hands on. As he continues to grow into his frame and potentially even get bigger and stronger…lookout.

“I consider myself a hybrid back that’s versatile,” he told Sportscasting when asked to break down his game. “I can give you production in the receiving game and also have a run package.”

That type of dual-threat running back doesn’t come along often, which is why scouts and colleges alike are so high on Owens. Including the schools mentioned above, he has 41 offers in total. Florida, LSU, Michigan, Notre Dame, and Ohio State are big-time schools that should also be mentioned.

247Sports considers Owens a Top 20 recruit nationwide, slotting him in at No. 18. He’s also considered the No. 2 player in the state of Texas, which is known for developing college football and eventually NFL talent.

Owens is still wide open on the recruiting trail

Rueben Owens, 5-star RB
Rueben Owens from El Campo Texas. He’s a 5-star RB | Photo provided by Rueben Owens.

With so many offers to consider and a future that’s undoubtedly bright, it doesn’t seem as if the talented running back is in that much of a rush to make a decision. In fact, he’s still feeling programs out and taking things one day at a time.

“Not really any favorites [yet], he told Sportscasting. “I’m just going to see who recruits me best down the home stretch because I’m a December grad.”

No matter where he ends up, the Texas product knows that he’s in a unique position as one of the top recruits in the nation. He also knows that his journey is far from over.

“I understand the work it’s going to take to perform at this level in college, so I stay focused on getting better,” he said.

Though he is still wide open in terms of his top list of schools, it is worth noting that the Texas Longhorns seem to be getting some traction amongst recruiting experts predicting where he’ll end up. According to the 247Sports Crystal Ball feature, out of seven recruiting analysts who have cast a vote on where he’ll end up, six have predicted the Longhorns.

Though he didn’t get into specific programs, the 5-star running back does know what he’s looking for in his college football home.

“Just a family culture that’s like real family, and a coach that wants to develop me as a person more than a player,” he said.

At Texas, Owens is being recruited by running backs coach Tashard Choice, who played in the NFL from 2008 to 2013. Steve Sarkisian is heading into his second year as the Longhorns head coach. He went 5-7 in 2021.

Owens models his game against some of the all-time NFL greats

Rueben Owens
Rueben Owens, 5-star running back | Photo provided by Rueben Owens.

With so much talent already at his disposal, it’s worth noting that in no way is Owens satisfied with himself.

“This offseason [I’m] just working on ways to become a more north & south runner. I know I want to be sharp in that area going into college,” he told Sportscasting.

He also has several players he keeps in mind as he looks to build his game and skill set as a running back, and they’re hard mentors to argue with.

“My game has four great running backs in it. The catching ability of Alvin Kamara, the vision and making people miss [like] Barry Sanders, yards after the catch and balance plus power of Walter Payton, and the quickness and big-play [ability] of Reggie Bush,” Owens said.

When watching his tape, it’s hard to argue with those comparisons.

He has the wiggle, explosion, and home-run ability of Sanders, Payton, and Bush, and throw in the fact that he’s a threat to catch the football, and you’ve got the Kamara comparison as well.

In Owens, we’re looking at a running back who both knows who he is, but also knows who he wants to be.

Considering his natural talent, that’s the type of player who will be extremely hard to stop at the college level, which is why so many schools are after his commitment.

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