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Boston College’s Dillon Can Do It All

By BJ Bennett
SouthernPigskin.com
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Dillon showed up at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis and promptly showed out.

The pre-draft process is one where administrators and analysts alike search for prospects who have that rare blend of potential and production. Boston College running back A.J. Dillon has both.

After 4,382 rushing yards and 38 rushing touchdowns in less than three full seasons with the Eagles, Dillon showed up at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis and promptly showed out. He, at a striking 6'0'' 247 pounds, recorded a 41-inch vertical leap, a number bested by just four prospects at the entire event. For good measure, he added a top ten broad jump measure of 131 inches. Dillon, with the size and strength of some inside linebackers, also ran a 4.53 forty yard dash. Impressively, he equally looked and performed the part.

Dillon's totals were among the most impressive at the combine. That said, even those recordings aren't the ones that truly stand out.

The work Dillon did at Boston College speaks for itself. Even without a senior season, he finished as the Eagles' all-time leader in rushing yards and rushing touchdowns, sprinting all of the way to fourth on the ACC's career rushing list. During his tenure, Dillon compiled 20 different 100-yard rushing games, four separate 200-yard efforts and ten-multi score outings; remarkably, he earned first-team All-ACC honors as a freshman, sophomore and junior. Dillon, by all measures, is one of the greatest running backs in league history.

Momentum, for Dillon, started well before the combine. He ended his college career having reached the 100-mark in eight of ten games, a stretch which included 223 yards and three touchdowns in a win over NC State, 242 yards and three scores in a victory over Syracuse and, in his grand finale, 178 yards and a touchdown in a triumph over Pittsburgh. Power Five's top four leaders in yards per game last season were Chubba Hubbard, J.K. Dobbins, Jonathan Taylor and Dillon, who tied for the national lead in attempts for the month of November.  

A true workhorse running back, Dillon is also a standout athlete, even in a setting such as the NFL Combine. He, simply for point of reference, had the same vertical leap as all-everything Ohio State cornerback Jeffrey Okudah, the same broad jump as dynamic Alabama wide receiver Henry Ruggs and a forty yard dash time mere hundreds of a second behind Oklahoma star wideout CeeDee Lamb; Dillon, mind you, did all this at nearly 250 pounds of rock-solid muscle. 

It goes without saying that Dillon, as his college statistics suggest, is a powerful downhill runner capable of carrying complete the load. He can clearly gain the tough yardage between the tackles and be an efficient option on third down and redzone situations. As his combine workout shows, however, Dillon is an explosive option as well. He is obviously one of the top athletes in the 2020 running back class, a player capable of filling every role at the next level. Dillon can do it all.  

Ahead of the upcoming NFL Draft, Dillon has checked off every box. His college career was one of the most storied by a running back in ACC history. Dillon's NFL Combine experience was one that turned heads. Boston College's pro day awaits. All that Dillon has currently done continues to boost his profile. As late April approaches, Dillon, still driving forward, has momentum entering the home stretch; such opportunities, given his track record, are usually where Dillon is at his best.

Dillon is an accomplished, talented and downright fascinating prospect. After yet another impressive season, his pre-draft process has come with more of the same.

BJ Bennett - B.J. Bennett is SouthernPigskin.com's founder and publisher. He is the co-host of "Three & Out" with Kevin Thomas and Ben Troupe on the "Southern Pigskin Radio Network". Email: bj@espncoastal.com / Twitter: @BJBennettSports