With the announcement that West Virginia running back Leddie Brown will not participate in the Guaranteed Rate Bowl next week to prepare for the NFL Draft in the spring, let’s take a look at some of his best performances he’s had in the old gold and blue.
Brown has had many memorable performances in the gold and blue, but here we look at Brown’s top five performances since his freshman season in 2018. Brown is coming off his second straight season of 1,000 plus rush yards, joining only seven other players in West Virginia history to ever accomplish that feat.
No. 5 – v. Texas 2021
Brown only ran in for one touchdown in this one but helped keep the Mountaineers 2021 bowl game hopes alive with a victory. The win came after West Virginia had dropped two games to then-No. 11 Oklahoma State and Kansas State. The lone score of the day for Brown came in the second quarter from two yards out on a drive that saw the Mountaineers drive 82 yards on 12 plays and use over five minutes of the game clock.
Brown set up a number of West Virginia touchdowns including back to back 26 and 18-yard rushes which positioned a Jarret Doege to Sean Ryan seven-yard touchdown pass in the third quarter. The 26-yarder was the longest of the day for Brown who ran for a total of 158 yards on the day and an average rush of 4.8 yards.
No. 4 – v. Kansas 2018
Brown’s second 100-plus rushing yardage game of his West Virginia career came against Kansas in week five of his freshman campaign. While the freshman rushed for 107 yards, he rushed in for a touchdown while also hauling in a touchdown pass from quarterback Will Grier six minutes into regulation.
The running back caught the touchdown pass from Grier from 15 yards out before rushing in a touchdown from one yard out on the next Mountaineer drive for the early two touchdown advantage, 14-0. The pair of early touchdowns propelled West Virginia to a 16-point victory over Big 12 foe Kansas, 38-22.
No. 3 – v. Baylor 2020
The Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, native in Brown provided in the clutch in this game with the game winning three-yard touchdown in double overtime after a wild first five periods of the game. Brown also rushed in a touchdown from one yard out to give the Mountaineers a 14-7 lead in the third quarter.
Overall on the day, Brown only rushed for a sub-100-yard mark of 93 yards and a long run of 19 yards but came through when West Virginia needed it most for the game winning touchdown.
No. 2 – v. Virginia Tech 2021
In a game that saw Brown burst into open space for an 80-yard touchdown rush on the second play of the day, the running back didn’t stop there while rushing for 81 more yards on the day. The big-time rush on the second play of the game provided the momentum for West Virginia to take a 27-7 advantage in the third quarter.
This game gave the Mountaineers a winning record early in the season at 2-1 after dropping their opener at Maryland before crushing Long Island in the home opener the week before, 66-0. Brown rushed for an average yardage mark of 8.5 yards per snap and also took three receptions for 35 yards.
No. 1 – v. Kansas 2020
West Virginia easily took care of the lowly Kansas Jayhawks again in this one as Brown went for a total of 195 yards and a pair of touchdowns, one through the air and one on the ground. The touchdown through the air came in the second quarter from Doege for six yards out for the 14-10 Mountaineer lead.
Then in the third quarter Brown took a handoff 87 yards to the house for his lone rushing touchdown of the day and the 14-point West Virginia advantage late in the game, 24-10. What’s even more impressive than the pair of touchdowns Brown scored on the day was the 10.8 yards per rush he averaged on the day.
No matter how Brown’s West Virginia career is viewed in the mind of Mountaineer fans far and near, nobody can argue that the running back wasn’t one of the main pieces of the gold and blue’s offense during his time in Morgantown.
Photo by Bryan Dougherty, Blue Gold Sports