Of all the players who did not see much action for Auburn on Saturday against No. 2 Clemson, Kamryn Pettway’s absence was perhaps the most noticeable.
The converted H-back was supposed to be Auburn’s No. 2 option at running back. The thunder to starter Kerryon Johnson’s lightning.
Instead, he played just a handful of snaps as a blocker and didn’t receive a single touch on offense.
“I was a little surprised,” said Johnson, who ran for 94 yards and a touchdown. “But when you don’t put together drives, that takes away from everybody getting onto the field. We had like 40 yards at halftime. We didn’t have a lot of carries because we didn’t have the ball. That hurts everybody on our offense.”
Of the five players expected to be most counted on to fill the hole left by the dismissal left by Jovon Robinson — Johnson, Pettway, Chandler Cox, Kam Martin and Malik Miller — only Johnson (23) and Cox (four) carried the ball on Saturday.
Wide receiver Stanton Truitt had four carries, and even defensive back Rudy Ford got into the game at running back. He didn’t touch the ball, but he was a standout running back in high school and is “electric with the ball in his hands,” head coach Gus Malzahn said. “It’s something where we’ll see where that goes.”
As for Pettway, Malzahn said he “will have a bigger role this game” against Arkansas State on Saturday.
“He’s not down about it, we’re not down about it. We know he’s just fine. We just have to get together as a unit and get better,” Johnson said. “He’s going to play more.”